Crash truck driver bids for bail
THE driver of a truck involved in a horrific accident with a train that claimed the lives of 24 farmworkers is expected to introduce new facts when he applies for bail tomorrow.
George Mandlazi is facing 24 counts of murder and reckless and negligent driving following the accident on the N4 highway in Hectorspruit near Malelane in Mpumalanga.
His attorney, Wonder Nkosi, told the Barberton Magistrate's Court: "We will apply for bail with new facts."
Mandlazi, 32, was denied bail last month by the same court. Concerns for his safety and his mental state were raised.
Opposing bail last month investigating officer Lieutenant Senzo Patrick Banda said Mandlazi did not sleep at night. "There is a possibility that he might commit suicide. He has to get counselling because he is still shocked by what happened."
Mandlazi is believed to have failed to stop at the level crossing on the N4 highway between Komatipoort and Malelane. There were about 44 passengers in the truck.
A train carrying coal from Witbank to Maputo crashed into the truck, dragging it for about 200metres, leaving bodies with their limbs missing scattered on the ground.
Banda said there was a chance that Mandlazi would flee the country.
Mandlazi told the court that he had relatives in Maputo.