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Fury after boy killed

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“We do not know exactly what happened there are a lot of rumours going around. All we know is that we are going to miss him so much.”

ANGRY: A large crowd gathered at the accident scene. Picture: Danie van der Lith

COMMUNITY members were baying for blood after a 10-year-old Galeshewe boy died instantly after being hit by a bakkie while crossing Barkly Road.

Lebogang Isaacs was on his way to school on Friday morning when he was hit.

Lebogang’s family has been left devastated. “We are going to miss his playful nature. He loved to dance. Our little choreographer is gone,” Lebogang’s grieving uncle, Remo Isaacs, said.

Isaacs said that Lebogang was his “jolly” self on Friday morning. “He was always calling out to his mother ‘Where’s my shoes? Where’s my suitcase? Where’s my this or that?’. That is how he always was and this morning (Friday) it was no different.”

Isaacs said that Lebogang usually walked to school with the next door neighbour’s daughter. “This morning (Friday) he called out to the neighbour asking where the girl was but she had left already so he walked to school with two of his classmates.

“We do not know exactly what happened there are a lot of rumours going around. All we know is that we are going to miss him so much.”

Police spokesperson Sergeant Majang Skalkie said that the police were investigating a case of culpable homicide.

A large crowd gathered at the scene of the accident – some blaming the driver of a Nissan NP200 bakkie while others tried to hold angry community members back.

“Give us the man who took one of our children. We will deal with him,” the angry community members said.

Police on the scene were forced to lock the driver in the bakkie for his own safety.

Lebogang’s visibly upset grandmother was on the scene and held one of his school books in her hand, trying to explain her loss. “He was a good, quiet boy who enjoyed watching TV and playing soccer. He had lots of friends and was popular amongst the pupils at Venus Primary School. He also loved his little sister Amy (4) very much.”

Althea Peters, the secretary of the Community Police Forum Frances Baard cluster, was also in a state of shock. “It could have been my child. I have no words. To lose a child so brutally is not fair on the family or the community. We feel with the family their loss.”

Another member of the community on the scene condemned those wanting to take the law into their own hands with regards to the driver. “Yes, it is heartbreaking. Yes, it could have been my child as well and it could have been his. This is not the time or the place to get into a fight. Let us respect the family at this time.”

According to Lebogang’s aunt, Boitumelo Sego, there was usually a traffic controller at that point in the road. “Ironically, this morning he wasn’t there,” she said.

Family and friends gathered at Lebogang’s house on Friday. Between the tears they remembered all the good times they had with him.

One memory that stood out for Sego was when she visited the family and was short of money for the taxi fare to go home. “We were sitting outside and I asked Lebogang’s mother for R2 for my taxi fare. Lebogang looked at me, put his hand in his pocket, took out R2 and said ‘this time you are going to owe me’.”

According to Sego and Isaac, the Grade 4 pupil was good at maths. “He really enjoyed going to school and his favourite subject was maths. Lebogang also enjoyed drawing. His mother’s bedroom wall is covered with his drawings.”

The community called for more road safety measures to be put in place. “There needs to be more visibility. Maybe the schools can have teams of scholar patrollers. Anything … just so that our children are safe.”

Another resident said that traffic cops and parents needed to be more proactive.

“There have been countless occasions where I have seen taxis transporting pupils where there is not even enough space for them to stand up straight. They are beyond overloaded. Parents need to write down the number plates of these taxis and pass them on to law enforcement. But, traffic cops should also be patrolling schools and picking up on such things,” she said.

Lebogang’s mother, Poence Rochelle, was too devastated to speak on Friday afternoon after being discharged from hospital, where she was treated for shock. His father, Abe Motsemme, who works on the mines in Prieska, was on his way home on Friday.

In an unrelated incident, a 12-year-old city boy is fighting for his life after he allegedly stole his father’s car and took it for a joyride.

According to police spokesperson Captain Tessa Jansen, the incident took place at approximately 11.30am on Saturday morning.

“The boy and two of his friends, aged 16 and 14 respectively, were travelling along Veld Street in Kirstenhof in the 12-year-old’s father’s Opel Kadett sedan when the driver lost control of the vehicle and crashed into a tree,” Jansen said.

Janse said that the two friends managed to get out of the vehicle, while the driver remained trapped behind the steering wheel.

“The friends called for help and the driver had to be freed from the wreck. All three were transported to hospital. The driver sustained serious injuries,” Jansen added.