MEC Reflects on the Tragic Death of Seven Learners Last Week
"Last week will always be remembered as a week of tragedy and sadness," said MEC Donald Grant after the ceremony.
"Seven of our young learners lost their lives in road accidents in just six days. It has come as a great shock to all of us."
On Monday, 16 November, Darren Hoffman and Roqeeb Isaacs from Oude Molen High School died in a car accident on Jan Smuts Drive in Pinelands. Early the following morning, Roché Lingenfelder (Grade 9) from Bellville High School and Jeandré Burmeister (Grade 12) from Bellville Technical School, also tragically died in an accident.
The following morning, Wednesday 18 November, six year old Lindile van Rooy, a Grade R learner at Gardenia Primary in Belhar, was tragically knocked down by a car on the Stellenbosch Arterial Road. On Saturday, another two learners from Weston Secondary in Louwville, Johnville Smith (Grade 12) and Jean Erasmus (Grade 11) passed away in a head on collision outside Langebaan.
"My deepest sympathies go out to all the families, friends, principals, teachers and fellow learners of those that died. Today, we are mourning their loss," he said.
"My condolences also go out to the family and friends of all the other victims, and I wish those that have been injured a fast recovery."
Grant also thanked the educators and departmental officials of all the schools for the roles they played in providing support to the learners at each of the five schools.
At the service, Grant said that the Provincial Government is committed to cutting down the death rates on our roads.
"Through the Safely Home campaign, the province aims to halve road fatalities by 2014. The campaign focuses primarily on speeding and drunken driving, as well as roadworthiness."
"I strongly appeal to all learners to exercise extreme caution while driving," he said.
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