VIP driver punched after accident on the N3

A motorcyclist punched a KwaZulu-Natal VIP driver on Saturday afternoon after the driver had crashed into the back of another car, seriously injuring its occupant.

KwaZulu-Natal transport spokesperson Rajen Chinaboo, confirming the accident on the N3 near Camperdown, said road traffic inspectorate officials at the scene reported that there “had been some sort of altercation”.

However, he could not provide any details.

However, the South African Press Association learnt that moments after the accident, a motorcyclist—who had apparently earlier been forced aside by the VIP Mazda 6 vehicle flashing its blue light—stopped at the accident scene and punched the driver before getting back on to his bike and driving off.

Police spokesperson Superintendent Henry Budhram confirmed that a VIP vehicle had been involved in an accident and that one person had been injured.

He said that he could “not confirm the altercation” but the circumstances would be investigated.

Netcare 911 spokesperson Chris Botha said paramedics reported that an eyewitness had stopped at the accident scene and had told police about the altercation.

The driver of the Fiat Siena was trapped and the jaws of life were used to cut him free. He was taken to St Anne’s Hospital in Pietermaritzburg.

The VIP unit usually transports provincial ministers, but the VIP driver on Saturday had not been driving anyone of importance, according to paramedics at the scene.

In April 2007, the Witness newspaper reported that its switchboard had been flooded with calls from motorists who said they had been pushed off the N3 by a blue-light convoy, identified as being that of African National Congress president Jacob Zuma.

It also reported at the time that a Pietermaritzburg man, Faizel Mooideen, had a rifle pointed at him and his family by security officers who tried to force them off a lane on the highway.

At the end of the same month a motorist used his cellphone to provide the newspaper with video footage of KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sbu Ndebele’s convoy doing 160km/h on the N3.

KwaZulu-Natal’s transport minister Bheki Cele later accused the motorist

of being “a self-made, arrogant, non-accountable individual who purports to be a good citizen and I will dare to argue that he is also a racist”.

He said at the time the motorist who filmed the speeding convoy had broken the law. Repeated demands to have the newspaper hand over the motorist’s name were rejected by the newspaper.

Camperdown is about 25km from Pietermaritzburg.
- Sapa

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