Police officials, mayor and chief among injured in tent collapse

2016-12-16 17:57
Tent blowing in the wind. (Tumi Sole, Twitter)

Tent blowing in the wind. (Tumi Sole, Twitter)

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Durban – Two police officials, a local mayor and a chief are among nine people believed to have been injured when the tent they were in at a Day of Reconciliation event was uprooted by strong winds, the North West police said on Friday.

President Jacob Zuma was forced to stop mid-speech at the national event in Gopane village near Zeerust, when the marquee was partly blown by strong winds at approximately 13:00.

It was towards the end of Zuma's speech when strong winds and bad weather conditions made it unsafe for him to continue.

While the president was unharmed during the incident, North West police spokesperson, Brigadier Sabata Mokgwabone, said the nine were taken to hospital.

“The injured persons include two police officials, a local municipality mayor and a chief. Out of nine, two are seriously injured while seven sustained slight injuries,” said Mokgwabone.

Presidency spokesperson Bongani Ngqulunga said Zuma stopped and left the marquee because it was becoming unsafe.

“He was not injured and is fine,” he said.

The Presidency had checked the weather prior to the event and the forecast had indicated that there would be scattered showers and thunderstorms in Zeerust.

There would be a high of 31°C and a 40% chance of rain.

North West Provincial spokesperson, Brian Setswambung, said the storm shook the tent violently.

The event was attended by several politicians, including North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo, Minister of Arts and Culture Nathi Mthethwa and North West MEC for Culture, Arts and Traditional Affairs Ontlametse Motshware.

Read more on:    jacob zuma  |  politics

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