|Posted by Ivan on April 7, 2016 at 4:10 AM|
A motorist accused of killing two joggers in a hit and run incident at New Hanover near Pietermaritzburg has been sentenced to ten years imprisonment in the Pietermaritzburg Regional Court. Mcabango Hlongwa (37 years old) admitted in his plea that he ran over the joggers (Xolani Nxele and Sthabile Mkhasibe) at the end of February.
He told the court that he had drunk two beers before the accident. Hlongwa says he is remorseful that he failed to foresee that the alcohol would impair his driving abilities. He also says he does not have a drivers licence.
After fatally knocking the two joggers, he then continued driving with Sithabile Mkhasibe's body tucked on the bonnet of his vehicle and dumped it in a sugarcane plantation.
Police spent five days combing hectares of sugarcane fields and eventually recovered Mkhasibe's body.
Magistrate Mishy Singh sentenced Hlongwa to ten years imprisonment. The magistrate says the accused is guilty of culpable homicide, defeating the administration of justice, negligent driving and contravening the National Road Traffic Act.
During sentencing, the Magistrate lashed out at the police who attended the scene for not inspecting if Hlongwa had a drivers licence as it turned out that he did not have. She says driving without a licence should have been the first charge Hlongwa faced - but there is no such charge in the charge sheet.
Prosecutor Ricky van Wyk asked the court to punish the accused as he caused misery for the families who tirelessly searched for their daughter Mkhasibe, until they found her in a sugarcane plantation.
Mkhasibe's sister Nomcebo Nkabinde says the ten year sentence is ridiculous and upsetting. “We are not happy about the sentence because it cannot bring two people back, especially my sister, as we could not find her for close to five days. He is only convicted for ten years and that is actually ridiculous and upsetting.”
She adds that the accused should have been charged with murder as he admitted to have killed the two, and not the mere culpable homicide he was sentenced for.
Sthabile Mkhasibe's grandfather, Gilbert Zuma, says the family had high hopes in the two deceased who were both graduates. He says they had started to help rebuild their home and help their parents.
He says, “We spent and lost so many resources during the search for our daughter. We exhausted all avenues, and we became emotionally depleted. We relied on these children as they had graduated in tertiary. They had started helping their families. We had high hopes that have now been shattered. We believed they would help us alleviate poverty - we will never forget.”
Hlongwa says he is remorseful for his actions and begged the victim's families' for mercy and forgiveness.
Original article can be viewed at: http://www.sabc.co.za