Andile Tshuma, Chronicle Reporter
SOUTH African Police have identified four of the five Zimbabweans who died when a Johannesburg-bound cross border Toyota Quantum collided with a Ford Fiesta along the N1 Highway near Musina.
Two of the deceased are children who were in the Toyota Quantum.
In a telephone interview yesterday Limpopo Province Police spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said the white Quantum had 25 passengers on board when the accident happened on Friday night.
Sources who spoke to Chronicle said the South Africa-registered Quantum was ferrying some undocumented children to that country to spend the Christmas and New Year break with their parents.
The sources said the Quantum driver lost control of the vehicle during a high-speed chase with the police but SAPS dismissed the allegations.
The deceased children were identified as Ncube Phemelo and Lubelihle Khumalo who died together with the Quantum driver Mr Emmanuel Sibanda. The other deceased are the Ford Fiesta driver Farai Hunyei and his passenger yet to be identified.
The SA Police called on people who may be missing relatives that were travelling to contact their nearest police station in South Africa.
The following are the names of people who were in the two vehicles that collided head-on:
Themba Khoza 1996-08-08, Mophat Ndlovu 1979-07-01, Thabiso Ncube 2010-11-27, Siphonkosi Mudenda 2003-05-14, Proffesor Chuma 2012-01-20, Lubelihle Khumalo 2011-06-01 deceased, Dingani Khumalo 1984-08-25, Bhekithemba Dube 2009-05-13, Phimelo Ncube 2007-03-18, Minehle Moyo a child, Junior Ndlovu 2007-03-29, Siyabonga Moyo 2008-07-11, Privilage Dube 2007-04-19, Khanyile Khumalo 2008-07-11 F, Blessing Sibanda child (F), Indiphile Dube child(f), Emmanuel Sibanda 1992-12-06, Nomsa Khasambara-2003-02-08 F, Dumisani Dube, Luyanda Nkomo, Bebe Melokuhle, Thandanani Mkhwananzi 1986-06-09, Phemelo Ncube
Ford Fiesta: Farai Hunye deceased male and his passenger yet to be identified.
Brig Mojapelo said the SAPS was yet to verify if there were illegal immigrants in the group.
“The South African Police Service in Musina are investigating a case of culpable homicide which took place on December 6, 2019 at about 2200 hours along the N1 road between Beitbridge and Musina policing area.
“A white Quantum with registration number HO54SDGP, pulling a trailer was from Zimbabwe with 25 passengers going to Johannesburg. Among the passengers, there were some kids. The Ford Fiesta vehicle registration number JG71KRGP was from Johannesburg heading to Zimbabwe with the driver Mr Farai Hunyei and one passenger.
“Along the N1 road after Baobab Tollgate the above vehicles had a head-on collision,” he said.
“The driver in the Ford Fiesta died at the scene and his passenger died in hospital. The driver was identified as Mr Farai Hunyei from Zimbabwe. Two passengers in the Quantum died at the scene and their driver Mr Emmanuel Sibanda, also from Zimbabwe died in hospital. The total number of fatalities is five,” said Brigadier Mojapelo.
The police spokesperson said drunken driving was the suspected cause of the accident although investigations were ongoing.
“Preliminary police investigations revealed alcohol might have contributed to the collision. Investigations are still continuing,” he said. — @andile_tshuma