THE trial of a South African-based Zimbabwean truck driver, who allegedly lost control of his vehicle and sideswiped a Johannesburg-bound Proliner bus, killing 31 people on the spot and leaving 40 others injured along the Harare-Masvingo Highway in April this year, was last week deferred to Thursday this week after the accused, Regis Mangwari, claimed he could not stand in the dock due to ill-health.
BY Stephen Chadenga
Mangwari, who is facing 31 counts of culpable homicide and negligent driving, looked pale and could hardly stand when he appeared before Mvuma magistrate, Tayengwa Chibanda, last Friday.
The accused has denied the charges, alleging the truck’s steering wheel locked, resulting in the accident.
The last witness from South Africa is expected to give evidence on the truck’s tracking system when the trial commences this week.
Allegations against Mangwari are that he was speeding at the time of the horrific accident, which occurred on April 5 this year. Both vehicles went up in flames on impact, resulting in some of the victims being burnt beyond recognition.
The State alleges that on approaching the 218km peg along the Harare-Masvingo Road, Mangwari lost control of his tyre-laden vehicle and sideswiped the bus, killing 31 people on the spot.
Bernard Nyoni is prosecuting the matter.