UKZN praises deputy minister Bavelile Hlongwa who graduated with two degrees
“It is therefore not surprising that her final act was one of bravery. May her soul rest in eternal peace,” said UKZN Executive Director of Corporate Relations Ashton Bodrick.
Hlongwa, the deputy minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, was killed on Friday after she was struck by a car when she and four others stopped to help at an accident scene on the N1 from Polokwane. She died instantly.
According to UKZN, Hlongwa graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemical Engineering and a Masters in Public Administration.
Hlongwa was appointed deputy minister on May 30.
Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe visited Hlongwa’s family in Durban yesterday.
Crisis Medical spokesperson Kyle van Reenen said accidents like these had happened before, even as people at the accident scene were exchanging contact details.
“Be at a safe space, especially those trying to render assistance by picking up people or taking stuff from the vehicle before it is towed. Park further back from the accident. We also park further back so that our vehicle can be hit first. That’s what we call a buffer zone.”
Van Reenen said if people parked right at an accident scene, they needed to treat the scene as if it was their car that had broken down and put out their emergency triangle.
He said motorists needed to safeguard themselves.
Meanwhile, N3 Toll Concession (N3TC) spokesperson Con Roux said what happened to Hlongwa was unfortunate. “It is hugely appreciated when people want to help at an accident scene but they should ensure it is safe to do so before doing anything else.”
He said this was to avoid a secondary crash because another driver could plough into the people at the accident scene.
Rescue Care Managing Director Garrith Jamieson reiterated that those wanting to assist crash victims must park safely away from the accident scene to avoid getting hit by other vehicles and to allow the relevant emergency services to get to the scene.
At the weekend, there were at least four road crash fatalities. On Friday evening one person was killed and about 30 injured when an 80-ton crane on a trailer rolled down Himalayas Road near Merebank, where it crashed into two taxis and a vehicle.
Also on Friday night, a taxi driver was killed when the taxi crashed into a street light on Queen Nandi Drive.
A further two people died when their vehicle overturned in an accident at 4am on the M25 Kwamashu Highway on Saturday.
Additional reporting by Kelyn Blackburn