Mbombela - The Mpumalanga Police Commissioner Lieutenant Mondli Zuma has urged police officials to take greater care on the province's roads, following the deaths of five members in less than two months.
The commissioner's plea comes following the latest fatal accident on Saturday when two constables were killed.
According to police spokesperson Colonel Mtsholi Bhembe, Constables Portia Makhosazane Zwane and Mthokozisi Erick Nkosi both 27, died on Saturday when they were about to turn right onto the N17 highway and their vehicle was hit by a truck which was travelling from Ermelo in the direction of Oshoek.
"The bakkie that the police officials were travelling in ended up in a nearby plantation as result of the impact."
Zwane died on the scene. Nkosi was transported to hospital by ambulance where he later succumbed to his injuries. A culpable homicide investigation was opened at at Chrissismeer Police Station. Both officials worked at the Mahamba Port of Entry.
Separately, Constable Orris Sabelo Ndhlovu, 34, who was a member of the Middelburg Flying Squad, died in a vehicle collision on June 14. The accident, which occurred on the R544 road between Emalahleni and Verena, also claimed the lives of his wife, two daughters, and another relative.
Another member of the Secunda Flying Squad, Sergeant Lucas Madiseng Morena, 44, died June 8. The officer was travelling on his motorbike, heading to Nelspruit to attend the Sun Riders MCC Rally. He collided with a truck on the N4 near Rolling Hills and died at the scene.
On May 12, Constable Jane Thandi Ntuli, 36, who was stationed at Delmas, was involved in a car accident. Constable Ntuli, who was eight months pregnant, was driving home from work on the R42 Bronkhorstspruit Road when an unknown vehicle which allegedly skipped a stop sign, collided with her vehicle. Ntuli was airlifted to hospital with life threatening injuries. Her baby was delivered that evening, but Ntuli did not survive and died the next day.
Zuma said the sudden passing of the SAPS members had left a void in the hearts of their families, the organisation, as well as the communities they served.
He strongly urged members to adhere to the rules of the road to prevent the unnecessary loss of life, and passed on his heartfelt condolences to the families of the two latest victims, Constables Zwane and Nkosi, on behalf of SAPS Management and employees.
African News Agency/ANA