/ 4 March 2008

Metro cop says Mandoza didn’t smell of alcohol

Johannesburg Metro police said on Tuesday they had not tested Kwaito star Mandoza for driving under the influence of alcohol after an accident on Saturday because he was being treated at the scene by paramedics.

Two people were killed when Mandoza smashed into the back of their car.

”We initially thought paramedics were busy with Mandoza because he was already inside the ambulance when police arrived at the scene,” said spokesperson Inspector Edna Mamonyane.

Mamonyane said while compiling the report, an officer had climbed into the back of the ambulance to ask Mandoza for his personal details and did not smell any alcohol.

”The officer was 20cm from him but didn’t smell alcohol on his breath.”

Phillip Thebe and Charles Tshabalala — employees at the Grace Hotel in Rosebank — died at the scene when the Mandoza’s vehicle, a DaimlerChrysler Crossfire, crashed into their VW Jetta along the N1 highway near the 14th Avenue offramp on Saturday.

”He hit it from the back, the Jetta lost control and overturned, trapping the two occupants inside and they died on the scene,” said Mamonyane.

”Nothing can be done because he [Mandoza] was already inside the ambulance,” said Mamonyane.

Mandoza had been attending the Mzansi Awards on Friday evening.

He sustained slight injuries and was taken to the Flora Clinic, where he was released later on Saturday. He is now said to be recovering at home.

”The people who were with him at the award ceremony who say he was drinking should come forward. Their statements will be taken by the investigating officer and they will be called out to testify in court.”

A case of culpable homicide was being investigated.

Once the Metro police had completed the investigation by the end of the week, the docket would be handed to the South African Police Service, who would launch an investigation, said Mamonyane. – Sapa