No bad feelings towards Zuma - victim's family

2014-12-11 16:10
(File: Sapa)

(File: Sapa)

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Johannesburg - The family of Phumzile Dube said on Thursday they do not harbour bad feelings against President Jacob Zuma's son Duduzane after an inquest into the accident which caused her death found he was negligent.

"I don't have a bad feeling [towards Zuma] because he didn't do it deliberately. We have to live our lives, I don't have a bad feeling with him, I can't expect him to go to jail because he is maybe a parent somehow," Albert Dube, 41, said after the inquest was concluded at the Randburg Magistrate's Court.

"I am feeling better because now I know what happened to our sister and now we can continue with our lives."

He said it had been difficult for the family emotionally and financially because his sister had a daughter.

Her daughter was doing "fine" but was a child and did not fully understand what was happening, he said.

"She is missing her mamma," Dube said.

An inquest into the accident that caused Phumzile Dube's death in February this year found Zuma was negligent.

"This court finds that the death of the deceased Phumzile Dube was prima facie brought about by the negligent actions of suspect two, Mr Zuma," Magistrate Lolita Chetty said reading her finding.

"He failed to conduct himself in a reasonable manner under the circumstances."

Chetty went through the evidence that had been presented and said Zuma's defence was rejected by the inquest.

Zuma chose to drive at a normal speed while it was raining, which exposed him and the vehicle to dangerous consequences.

On 1 February this year, Zuma's car rear-ended Jabulani Vusi Dlamini's minibus taxi on the M1 South off-ramp to Grayston Drive in Sandton. Passenger Dube was killed and three others were injured.

During the inquest, Zuma said he lost control of his Porsche after it hit a puddle in rainy conditions.

After Chetty read the findings and the inquest concluded, Zuma shook the hands of prosecutor Yusuf Baba, National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Nathi Mncube, and the other lawyers.

Zuma, dressed in a black suit, greeted journalists as he left the courtroom, and said he would not comment.

Claim with RAF

Dube family lawyer Advocate David Maree said the family would institute a normal claim at the Road Accident Fund and the attorney's would deal with it.

He said the amount of the claim would depend on the salary Dube earned and what expenses the family had.

"You have to look at the situation that they find themselves in, the child was dependent on the mother and as well as the deceased's [family] was also dependent on her," he said.

"That basically will tell us that there is a bit of a financial situation constraint for the family at this stage."

After proceedings on Thursday, Mncube said the finding did not mean Zuma had been found guilty of anything.

"We will get the transcripts of the record and then the NPA is going to consider whether it is going to institute prosecution," he said.

There was a lot of evidence that came up which the NPA would have to study.

"It is not a given that prosecution will ensue from henceforth."

Mncube said he could not speculate on the NPA charging Zuma with culpable homicide.

The director of public prosecutions would study the findings before making a decision.

In July, the NPA said it declined to prosecute Zuma due to insufficient evidence.

Last month, the State and defence presented closing arguments and Chetty took two weeks do examine the documentation handed in by the legal teams.

Read more on:    npa  |  duduzane zuma  |  johannesburg  |  accidents

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