DA accused of politicising smash

By Drum Digital
09 September 2013

KwaZulu-Natal transport MEC Willies Mchunu has accused the Democratic Alliance of "political point-scoring" over the Field's Hill crash which claimed 22 lives.

Mchunu was reacting to a statement by DA provincial spokesman Radley Keys in which he claimed the party had, for the past eight years, sought to draw attention to the dangers of heavy vehicles using Field's Hill instead of the N3 toll route.

On Thursday, 22 people died when an articulated truck's brakes failed on Field's Hill.

The vehicle careened down the M13 and smashed into four minibus taxis and a car at an intersection at the bottom of the hill.

"Even during this difficult time when the province is in mourning, the DA, true to its form, could not resist temptation to use this unfortunate moment for political breast-beating and political point-scoring," said Mchunu.

He said the accident was not an opportunity for politics, but a time to set aside differences to resolve the carnage on the country's roads.

Keys said that apart from raising the dangers of heavy duty traffic at a provincial level, a number of Durban councillors had been campaigning for a ban on trucks using the hill.

"We have also sent expert traffic studies, numerous different proposals and letters to the MEC regarding this issue. We have never received any feedback," said Keys.

He said that the head of the province's transport portfolio committee should summon Mchunu to appear before the committee.


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