Durban couple tell of harrowing kidnap ordeal by armed hijackers
Speaking to the Daily News outside the Cato Manor police station, they opted to remain anonymous, fearing the hijackers would be looking for them after their Wednesday night ordeal.
The couple, aged 27 and 42, were seated outside a house in the man’s Nissan Murano in the Wiggins area of Cato Manor. They said two men walked up to the car and cocked their guns. The men forced them into the back seat. Three others carrying firearms also got in.
They forced the couple to lie face-down on the floor. The hijackers took the couple’s money and cellphones from their pockets and drove towards oThongathi.
“They hit me with the gun on my hand and back,” said the man. “They threatened to break my finger. The ordeal lasted about 30 minutes.
“I informed them that the SUV didn’t have enough fuel. I was hoping they’d stop at a garage so we could scream for help, or they’d ditch the car to avoid the hassle of refuelling.
“While they were discussing what to do they pushed my girlfriend into the back of the SUV.
“One guy was getting up to accompany her. He told her to stay hidden. During the shuffle of places, I saw an opportunity to escape. I dived forward, pulled the door lever and bailed out. It was a do-or-die situation,” he said.
He slammed into the tarmac suffering bruises to his entire body. The hijackers drove off with his girlfriend.
The man ran into a sugar cane field and hid. He then walked a short distance to a petrol station in Waterloo. Petrol attendants called the police.
He was taken to Osindisweni Hospital for treatment and discharged.
The hijackers dropped off his girlfriend, unharmed, near a petrol station in oThongathi.
The man said Reaction Unit South African tried to track the stolen cellphones but they were switched off.
“I couldn’t sleep that night knowing she was out there and wondering if she was alive. When they hijacked me, they said they were looking for me.
“I’m grateful to have been reunited with her at the police station. Jumping out of the SUV saved both our lives,” he said.
The car had not been found at the time of publication. Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele confirmed a case of hijacking was opened.