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Fatal accident on neglected R522 road bridge

News - Date: 12 August 2017

Written by: Tshifhiwa Mukwevho / Viewed: 901


Despite repeated promises the past two years from the Road Agency Limpopo (RAL) to fix the collapsed bridge on the R522 road, the bridge remains unfixed. A few weeks ago, seven people were injured in yet another accident on the road.

The bridge collapsed some five years ago, so that cars coming from both sides now have to make turns when crossing the part of the road that is still intact.

The EPW Project’s workers who are stationed at the Schoemansdal Museum Centre were travelling in a Nissan bakkie when it hit a white BMW that was waiting in front of them for an oncoming car to pass first.

The incident happened on 23 June, but four of the people injured in the accident are still recovering from their injuries. “All of us were left injured,” said Mavis Madzhie. “At least four among us sustained serious injuries.”

Residents of the Kutama area remain disappointed with the RAL’s lack of response to enquiries regarding the bridge which they say has been left as a death trap. It has so far claimed two lives over the years.

A representative from the Kutama Traditional Council, Mr Gilbert Muofhe, said that they had reported the matter to the RAL and other governmental institutions many times, to no avail.

Phadziri & Sons Bus Service’s Mr Doctor Phadziri said that the RAL was being unresponsive and reckless towards the road users’ pleas. “Our buses carry between 65 and 95 passengers each, and most of them are workers who commute to and from work daily,” he said. “What if we were to experience a fatal accident as a result of RAL’s negligence? Wouldn’t that man-made tragedy leave innocent children fatherless and motherless? Who would take care of those children psychologically, emotionally and financially?”

Limpopo Mirror has been trying to make follow-up enquiries as to when RAL would fix the bridge. RAL’s office did not respond to email messages or phone calls.


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A representative from the Kutama Traditional Council, Mr Gilbert Muofhe, with Mr Doctor Phadziri.


Ms Yvonne Maphutha sustained severe injuries on her leg.

Ms Yvonne Maphutha sustained severe injuries on her leg.

A representative from the Kutama Traditional Council, Mr Gilbert Muofhe, and Mr Doctor Phadziri at the broken bridge.

Some of the victims: Ms Mavis Madzhie, Ndifelani Maphalaphathwa, Phadu Mantshelo, Azwindini Mahuwa and Maria Tshinnda.


Tshifhiwa Mukwevho

Tshifhiwa Given Mukwevho was born in 1984 in Madombidzha village, not far from Louis Trichardt in the Limpopo Province. After submitting articles for roughly a year for Limpopo Mirror's youth supplement, Makoya, he started writing for the main newspaper. He is a prolific writer who published his first book, titled A Traumatic Revenge in 2011. It focusses on life on the street and how to survive amidst poverty. His second book titled The Violent Gestures of Life was published in 2014.


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