SEE: Fikile Mbalula addresses mass funeral for victims of Limpopo crash

2019-06-22 10:59
Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula (File, AFP)

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula (File, AFP)

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Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula has paid his last repects at a mass funeral that was underway in Ga-Rapitsi, Limpopo, on Saturday morning for 21 of the 24 young people who died in a horror crash on the R81 outside Mooketsi in Limpopo last Sunday.

A collision involving a minibus taxi and a bus on the R81 in Maphalle, in Limpopo has claimed the lives of 24 people, News24 reported.

It is believed that the occupants of the minibus were returning from Youth Day celebrations in the province when the accident occurred at approximately 20:30 on Sunday evening.

"We are here to mourn young people whose lives were cut short in their prime in the most tragic circumstances. Your loss is the loss of the nation. Your pain is our pain. No parent should go through the pain of burying their own children," said Mbalula.

"Our public transport system cannot be coffins on wheels where innocent people lose their lives because of the careless behaviour of others... Similarly, our roads cannot be gravesites, but pathways that connect our people to centres of economic activity and social amenities such as hospitals and institutions of learning. Each death on our roads is one death too many."

In attendance at the mass funeral are Mbalula, Deputy Minister Dikeledi Magadzi and the Premier of Limpopo, Stanley Mathabatha.

They have been joined by the Limpopo MEC for Transport Dickson Masemola, the Executive Mayor of Mopani District Municipality, Cllr Pule Shai, and the Mayor of Greater Letaba Municipality, Cllr Peter Matlou.

Acting CEO of the Road Accident Fund (RAF), Lindelwa Xingwana-Jabavu, and CEO of the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC), Advocate Makhosini Msibi, were also in attendance. 

The Department of Transport announced that a task team comprising the Provincial Departments of Health, Social Development, Transport and Community Safety, as well as the Letaba District Municipality, the Mopani Local Municipality and RAF, has played an active role in assisting families of the deceased with preparations for the memorial and funeral services.

"The National Department of Transport would like to convey its gratitude to the task team and other key role players such as the traditional leaders and community structures, for their coordinated efforts in supporting the families of the deceased during this difficult time," said Mbalula

Watch Mbalula's eulogy here:

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Read more on:    fikile mbalula  |  polokwane  |  accidents
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