Bus driver SHOT DEADwhile driving >> from page 1

2016-04-07 06:00
The bus driver lost control of the bus after he was shot causing it to crash down an embankment. Photo: IPSS Medical Rescue

The bus driver lost control of the bus after he was shot causing it to crash down an embankment. Photo: IPSS Medical Rescue

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A PUBLIC bus driver was shot and killed as he was transporting about 30 passengers from Tongaat to Umhlanga on the Watson Highway on Friday morning.

The 44-year-old Tongaat Circle bus driver, Zakhe Gumede was shot twice at close range by one of his passengers in his right upper arm and the left side of his jaw, resulting in his death.

According to IPSS Medical Rescue paramedic Paul Herbst, the driver then lost control of the vehicle and the bus crashed down a small embankment.

“We transported a number of patients to hospital after they sustained minor injuries in the crash, but the driver was, unfortunately, declared dead by our advanced life support paramedic due to his extensive injuries,” said Herbst.

Tongaat SAPS detective Warrant Officer Pillay, who is leading the murder investigation, said a man dressed in overalls with the word “Frimax” written on the back entered the bus at the Shell garage in Tongaat before the bus continued its route on the Watson Highway.

“A witness who was getting off the bus in Westbrook said he overhead the suspect demanding money from the driver as he disembarked the bus. Shortly afterwards, two gunshots went off and the driver was killed at the scene,” said Pillay.

He added that no arrests have yet been made, but police are doing their best to identify the suspect and bring him to justice.

Hambanathi resident and mother of two, Joyce Mhlope, who is reliant on public transport to get to and from work every day, said many people are tired of the dangerous conditions in which they are forced to travel.

“It is so sad that something like this has happened. We are all just trying to live our lives and work to provide for our families, and a shooting like this makes me scared to travel, or to put my children on the bus or in a taxi,” said Mhlope, who added that violent crime is a serious problem in the area.

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