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Nine ANC supporters killed in KZN bus crash after attending election manifesto launch

Nine ANC supporters killed in KZN bus crash after attending election manifesto launch
Nine ANC supporters died and others are in a critical condition after the bus they were in crashed in northern KwaZulu-Natal on 25 February 2024. (Photos: Gallo Images / Darren Stewart | X/@_ArriveAlive)

The bus was chartering ANC supporters back to Mpumalanga after the launch of the governing party’s manifesto in Durban.

At least nine ANC supporters have died and others are in critical condition after the bus they were travelling in crashed on the R33 near Dumbe, Paulpietersburg, in northern KwaZulu-Natal, early on Sunday morning. 

The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Transport confirmed that the accident occurred at about 5am. The bus was travelling back from the launch of the ANC’s election manifesto at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Saturday. 

Read more in Daily Maverick: ANC manifesto promises ‘prescribed assets’, NHI in five years, 3.5m new state job opportunities

“The law enforcement team on the scene has so far confirmed nine fatalities. However, they have not concluded the full recovery of the bus at the accident scene,” the department said in a statement.

“Scores of other occupants sustained injuries, with four being more critical. They have all been taken to a local hospital.”

The cause of the accident was being investigated, and experts would be deployed to help with the forensic investigation.

KZN MEC for transport, community safety and liaison Sipho Hlomuka expressed his condolences to all the affected families.

“After such a hugely successful rally in Moses Mabhida, we are now waking up to such painful news. We have, however, already deployed a team on the scene that is already at work with all law enforcement agencies. The investigation has already started, and we are already in touch with the bus owner. Our investigation is looking at the condition of the road, condition of the bus, weather during the time of the accident, and the condition of the driver,” he said.

“We wish to express our deepest condolences to all the affected families and speedy recovery to all those who sustained injuries.”

The ANC said it was shocked by the news of the crash. National spokesperson Mahlengi Bhengu-Motsiri said the KZN health MEC and deputy chairperson of the ANC in the province, Nomagugu Simelane, along with other party leaders in KZN and Mpumalanga, were en route to the scene of the accident and the hospitals “where they will assess the situation, visit the injured comrades and meet with the families affected”.

“Our comrades exemplified an unwavering commitment to the ANC by responding to the rallying call of Mayihlome. It is a true tragedy that there be such a loss of lives after such a memorable day. Their selflessness and commitment to building a better future for generations to come will forever be remembered,” said Bhengu-Motsiri. DM

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Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • MaverickMe says:

    The loss of any life is always a tragedy however one should take the possible circumstances or “facts” into consideration.

    The distance between Durban and Paulpietersburg is + – 370km’s. It is alleged that the accident happened around 5AM on Sunday morning. It does not take a rocket scientist to calculate that the bus most probably left Durban any time between midnight and 1AM. Should the driver and passengers have been celebrating the ANC’s manifesto launch you can be guaranteed that it was not done with tea and biscuits.

    The sad reality is that the politicians will milk this accident for all it’s worth for soundbites and election reasons instead of using that energy to ensure that their potential voters are transported safely.

  • Fanie Rajesh Ngabiso says:

    Were these needless deaths possibly a result of any one of the following:
    1. The government not enforcing proper vehicle road worthiness checks?
    2. The government not properly maintaining the road on which the vehicle was driving?
    3. The government not enforcing maximum passenger limit adherance in vehicles?
    4. The government not enforcing necessary traffic laws?

    I would put money on it being due to one of, or a number of these ANC government failings.

    To the family members of those lost, please check these things very carefully, as if I am correct then it is entirely possible that you will be able to sue the state for the tragic loss of your loved ones.

  • Mkili Muzenha says:

    Condolences to the families. Losing a loved one through whatever means is always tragic and saddening.

    May the forces be with them.

  • Dennis Bailey says:

    Experts despatched to fill the pots holes, cover up ANC culpability and generally protect politicians from being tarnished.

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