The Midweek Sun
FATAL HIT: Kombiman knocks down student at bus stop
The death of 16-year-old Kevin Matlhaope - a form three student at Gabane Secondary School in the Mogoditshane/Thamaga District - has plunged the student community into great sorrow.
Kevin was knocked down by a 47-year-old public transport driver of Mogoditshane Route 7 at Tsabong Bar traffic lights bus stop in Tsolamosese last week.
According to Assistant Superintendent Patrick Makoba, who is Station Traffic Officer in Mogoditshane, the incident occurred in the early hours when Kevin was going to school.
“It happened around 0600hrs, the young boy was by the bus stop waiting for the next available kombi when he got hit by the driver. We do not really understand what happened that led to the driver hitting the boy, we are still questioning the driver,” Makoba said.
They found the driver at the accident scene when they arrived, and he was taken in for questioning. They have since established that at the time of the horror incident, there were no passengers inside the said kombi.
However, as for Kevin, he was certified dead upon arrival at Lesirane clinic.
Makoba said that once done with investigations, the kombi driver, whom they have since released from custody, will be taken to court.
“He will be in court soon because there are witnesses. There were students who saw the accident happen. They are traumatised and we need to approach the matter with caution,” the police officer said.
The Midweek Sun has learnt that at the time of his death, Kevin was living with his family in Mogoditshane but hails from Kalkfontein in the Gantsi District.
A teacher from Gabane Junior Secondary School shared how the student community is failing to come to terms with what happened to Kevin. On the day he died, many students, including teachers, were unable to hold back their tears.
“It was an emotional day for the school and even to date, the accident still haunts those who saw him lying there on the ground unconscious and when he breathed his last. The students are traumatised, as for his friends, they dread coming to school,” the teacher said.
The school head Kgomotso Mothogapi said students have been getting counselling and support.
“It was very difficult on the day we broke the news to them. They cried so much we had to release them. Kevin was a very clean boy. It was easy to notice him. The entire school knew him. He was soft spoken and always jovial.
“The students told us of how he always assumed the conductor role when they boarded kombis, he collected the fares on behalf of Kombi owners then made sure he does not pay,” Gabane CJSS school head said.
The school is planning a memorial service for Kevin tomorrow (Thursday) where they intend to celebrate his life.