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The father of a seven-month-old baby who was left in the middle of the road after her mother was hijacked on Tuesday said he was relieved that his family was safe.
Jonathan Nair’s wife, Shriah, was hijacked outside the Glenwood Village Centre.
The hijackers sped off before she could remove her daughter, Azaria, from the car.
Erik Bredberg, a passing motorist, found the child, still in her car seat, in a road a few kilometres away.
Jonathan said he feared the worst when he was told that his child had been taken by the hijackers.
He said that, when he arrived at the scene, he saw his wife in a bad state, and that the first thing she had said was she was sorry about Azaria.
Jonathan said he started to panic when a policeman came to him and told him Azaria had been found and the vehicle had been recovered.
“We went to the Mayville police station to pick her up. It felt amazing to have my wife and my daughter with me again.”
He said he did not expect police to recover his car so quickly.
Nair said the car did not have a tracking device and had not been insured.
“It’s all a big miracle,” he said.
Nair said that, although his wife had been relieved that all was well, she was still traumatised.
Meanwhile, a car guard working outside the shopping centre, Sthembiso Sibiya, on Thursday spoke of how the hijackers had threatened to shoot him when he screamed for help.
“I shouted at them to leave the woman, but one of them pulled out a gun and pointed it at me, saying that I must shut up or he would shoot me,” he said.
He said that on the day of the hijacking he had seen the woman leaving the shopping centre with groceries in one hand and her baby in a car seat in the other.
“She put the groceries and baby in the back seat of her car, and when she was walking to the driver’s door, these two guys came out of nowhere.”
Sibiya said he had been across the road as the hijacking unfolded.
“The one guy was holding and pulling her arm because she had the car key in her hand and wouldn’t give it to them. She was screaming while all of this was happening,” he said.
He said after the gun had been pointed at him, he ran and hid behind some parked cars, where he could still see what was happening.
“When they got into the car, they tried to start it a couple of times, and it just wouldn’t. They eventually managed to start it and sped off up King Dinuzulu (Berea) Road,” he said. Sibiya said he had wanted to help the woman, but had been afraid for his own life.
“I could see that the woman was being hurt. The strength that guy was using when he pulled and twisted her arm for the car key was very aggressive,” he said.
Sibiya said he had heard that the baby had been found.
“I’m just glad that both the woman and her child are okay. It is just sad to see people take things from people like they are entitled to it or something.”