No prison time for motorist who killed jogger Neil Robinson

2015-09-19 14:24
10022013 The scene of the crash that claimed jogger, Neil Robinson’s life in Alexandra road extension.Photo.Ian Carbutt
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10022013 The scene of the crash that claimed jogger, Neil Robinson’s life in Alexandra road extension.Photo.Ian Carbutt PHOTO: ian carbutt

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Pietermaritzburg - The motorist who killed Pietermaritzburg jogger Neil Robinson, aged 60 after falling asleep at the wheel in 2013 is not going to prison.

Zandisile Ndaba, aged 23 was yesterday given a wholly suspended five-year jail sentence, plus ordered to undergo three years under correctional supervision by regional magistrate Corrie Greyling.

Accountant Robinson died under horrific circumstances in front of his life partner Lynn-Rae van den Berg when Ndaba’s car veered over the road and jumped onto the pavement on Alexandra Road Extension on February 9, 2013.

Greyling said the three-year period of correctional supervision to which she sentenced Ndaba was to include house arrest, 16 hours of community service per month, and would require Ndaba to undergo various life skills, substance abuse and other programmes deemed necessary by Correctional Services.

In terms of the court order, the Correctional Services officer in charge of monitoring Ndaba will have discretion to decide on the actual programmes, nature of the community service he will perform and the period he should remain under house arrest.

Robinson’s sister Sharon O’Hara said afterwards she believes that the “highest expression of love” she can offer to honour her late brother’s memory is to “forgive”.

However, Van den Berg said she “cannot forgive”.

“Nothing will ever make it right. I cannot conjure up any sort of forgiveness, I am sorry,” said Van den Berg.

Her father, Gerry Welch, who fetched his daughter from the scene of the accident, said both of them have to live with the horror of that picture for the rest of their lives.

Passing sentence on Ndaba, the magistrate said the court had to take a balanced view and consider Ndaba’s personal circumstances, whether he was remorseful as well as the nature and consequences of his crime and interests of society.

She said arriving at a fair sentence was the court’s most difficult task.

She took into account that Ndaba had pleaded guilty and was himself traumatised.

Ndaba is also suffering from physical injuries he sustained in the accident as a result of which he cannot lift any heavy objects.

He has a diploma in quantity surveying and construction and is currently studying further.

In his plea, Ndaba said he was tired when the accident happened as he had attended his grandmother’s wake for most of the night and only got an hour’s sleep. He had been running errands ahead of the funeral for his grandmother that morning when he fell asleep at the wheel.

Greyling said the aggravating factors and consequences flowing from Ndaba’s negligent crime, however, outweighed his personal circumstances.

“This was a horrific scene. As a result of the impact the deceased’s body was cut in half and his life partner was an eye witness to it and it is something she will have to bear for the rest of her life,” she said

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  accidents

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