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Official injured in premier crash

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“My car spun around on impact and I saw the premier inside the car. He never stopped to enquire about my injuries following the incident”

A SOL Plaatje motor registration examiner suffered neck and head injuries after she was involved in an accident, where a vehicle that was transporting Premier Zamani Saul collided into her at the intersection between Schmidtsdrift and Silson roads in Riviera yesterday morning.

Northern Cape police spokesperson Captain Olebogeng Tawana indicated that the matter “was not being investigated in our policing precinct”.

Eyewitnesses related that a white Audi Q7, transporting Saul, had allegedly skipped a red robot. After the accident a black BMW with blue lights, which was travelling in convoy, transported Saul from the accident scene.

This is despite Saul vowing that there would be no blue lights or self-indulgence – in an attempt to cut back on wasteful expenditure – during his inauguration speech.

The front section of the Audi Q7, which belongs to the government fleet, was badly damaged and was towed away, while traffic was disrupted for some time.

Members of the public stated that VIP transport had no regard for road safety or the lives of road users.

“Not even the president would be transported in this manner.”

Saul was on his way to attend a meeting at Frances Baard District Municipality.

Kereng Itbaie-Mbangula said that she was travelling down Silson Road in a white Ford bakkie when the Audi crashed into her as she was on her way home.

“I tried to accelerate to avoid the accident but my car was not fast enough. I saw the approaching vehicle from the side but was under the impression that the car would stop as the robot was red for them. My car spun around on impact and I saw the premier inside the car. He never stopped to enquire about my injuries following the incident. I waited in the car until the ambulance arrived, as I was extremely dizzy, disorientated and in a state of shock. My injuries could have been much more severe, I could have died.”

Itbaie-Mbangula added that while the premier’s personal assistant and spokesperson for the Office of the Premier had visited her in hospital, no mention was made regarding whether they would pay for her medical costs.

A VIP protector who was travelling in the Audi Q7 received medical treatment at Mediclinic Gariep Hospital.

The spokesperson for Mediclinic Gariep Hospital, Denise Coetzee, said the patient was in a stable condition and did not sustain any serious injuries.

The spokesperson for the Office of the Premier, Bronwyn Thomas-Abrahams, yesterday confirmed that the premier’s official vehicle was involved in an accident.

“At the time of the accident the premier, Dr Zamani Saul, was in the car. No other serious injuries can be reported on passengers in both vehicles. The premier dispatched members of his staff to ensure that the two persons receiving medical attention are seen to at the hospital.”

She added that Saul continued with his scheduled official engagements after ensuring that the patients received medical care and he wished them a speedy recovery.

“Further details pertaining to the accident are not available at this time,” said Thomas-Abrahams.