Speeding taxi driver jailed for death of five passengers

MARCH 25, 2016

A Free State taxi driver was handed a two-year sentence for an accident which claimed the lives of five of his passengers in March 2013, the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) said on Thursday. 

Ten other passengers were injured in the crash, said RTMC spokesperson, Simon Zwane. 

Mosala Zachariah Mokoena was convicted in the Heilbron Magistrate's Court of culpable homicide and his driver's licence was suspended. 

"The court sentenced him to two years imprisonment with one year suspended for five years," said Zwane. 

Mokoena's vehicle hit a pothole, which caused a tyre to burst, and the vehicle overturned.

The RTMC and SAPS conducted an investigation and a crash reconstruction revealed the vehicle had been travelling faster than the permitted speed limit when the crash occurred, Zwane said.

As motorists prepared to travel over the Easter holidays, Zwane warned them that the courts were no longer prepared to view road crashes as mere accidents. 

"It is clear that crashes are avoidable and preventable and drivers will be held accountable for failing to exercise due care," he said. 

-News24