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08 May 2002 00:00
A high-ranking police official appeared briefly in the King William’s Town Magistrate’s Court on a charge of drunken driving on Monday.
The case against Superintendent Mahlubandile Robert Dlabantu (55) was temporarily withdrawn by public prosecutor Tandi Jonas for a decision by the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Dlabantu was arrested along the town’s Buffalo Road by traffic officials after he was allegedly spotted driving erratically by the deputy director for traffic control, Mqondisi Kulati.
He was detained at the police cells overnight before his court appearance.
Kulati said he was travelling towards town from Dimbaza when he came across a white Mercedes-Benz.
“The driver was all over the road and it was impossible for me to overtake.
I suspected the driver was drunk and called for back-up from the local traffic department while I tailed him into the town.”
Kulati said the Mercedes skipped a four-way stop and a red robot at the intersection of Cathcart and Wellington streets, then nearly collided with an oncoming vehicle when the driver suddenly made a U-turn.
The Mercedes then drove up Cathcart Street into Buffalo Road and skipped three red robots along the way.
The car continued to drive all over the road, narrowly missing a head-on collision in Buffalo Road.
Kulati said he then spotted local traffic officials and together they tried to pull the car over, but the driver ignored the instruction.
At the intersection of Wodehouse Street and Buffalo Road the car was forced to stop and the driver arrested.
“He was unstable on his feet, unable to communicate and reeked of alcohol,” Kulati said. - Sapa
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