Young women die in accident

2019-08-14 06:00
photo: supplied

photo: supplied

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THE death of four young women who died in a vehicle accident at the weekend has left the royal family reeling from shock. The four women, the driver and his friend, died at the scene. The bodies were burnt beyond recognition.

The driver of the Quantum taxi was taking the girls from Pomeroy to Ndumeni when he lost control of his vehicle and went over a bridge before catching alight. The injured were rushed to the Church of Scotland Hospital in Tugela Ferry.

According to reports, the young women were coming back from a camp for maidens called Siyaya eMhlangeni [We are ready for the Reed Dance] in Dundee. At the camp the girls undergo virginity tests prior to the annual Reed Dance ceremony that will take place in September at the royal palace in KwaNongoma, north of KwaZulu–Natal.

MEC for Arts and Culture, Hlengiwe Mavimbela, said: “We are saddened by the incident where we lost innocent lives. Our thoughts and prayers are with their families during this difficult time. Officials from the department have been on the scene since the accident happened and have been working with the police to help identify victims and notify families.”

Mavimbela told all taxi associations to exercise caution when transporting passengers to events like Siyaya eMhlangeni.

“We urge drivers to exercise caution on the roads, especially at this period when maidens will be travelling to various places to prepare for uMkhosi Womhlanga [Reed Dance ceremony] which will be taking place on September 7.”

Founder of Nomkhubulwane Culture and Youth Development Organisation, Dr Nomagugu Ngobese, sent her condolences to the affected families. Ngobese is at the forefront of reviving the ceremony and promoting skills development among the youth.

“South Africa has lost maidens who were proud of their virginity. We are still shocked about the tragic accident that claimed the lives of the innocent young girls.

“In the wake of accidents on our roads, people should be aware that there are spirits that are wondering around the roads waiting to cause accidents,” Ngobese said.

She called on parents of the young women who will be attending the Reed Dance to pray for the safety of all the children who will be attending the ceremony.

Ngobese added: “Accidents are inevitable. It is wrong for other people to think that abolishing the Reed Dance ceremony would be an ideal solution to avoid the fatal accidents that occur during this period.

“An accident can happen anytime. The Zulu royal family is saddened by the tragic accident. We all need to unite and support the affected families.”

Spokesperson for the royal household, Prince Thulani Zulu, said Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini Zulu sent his condolences to the affected families.

“We called on all pastors and interfaith organisations to pray during this difficult period. The maidens will be attending the Reed Dance ceremony next month, therefore we all need to ask for divine intervention.”

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