East London – An Eastern Cape minibus taxi driver is on the run after allegedly mowing his vehicle through a large group of students at the weekend, killing three teenagers and injuring four others, police said on Monday.
A huge crowd of teenagers, mixed with young adults, had been celebrating the end of exams and the start of school holidays in front of Eyethu night club, Kwazakhele, in the early hours of Sunday morning, said Captain Andre Beetge.
It is believed that hundreds of people were at the celebration, and that they had used a bunch of taxis to block the road off so they could party.
“They were drinking in the streets. At about 01:30, a white minibus drove with quite a speed through the street and through a group of people, hitting at least six of them,” he said.
It was not clear how the taxi got through the blockade.
Two 14-year-old girls died on the scene. A 19-year-old boy was declared dead on arrival at the hospital.
Beetge said their families were streaming into the mortuary on Monday morning to identify the bodies.
Two teenagers were transferred to Livingstone Hospital, while two brothers – 13 and 14 – were later discharged.
The minibus was later found abandoned in Missionvale.
“The owner told police that the vehicle was stationary by 21:00 that night and that, for some reason, the driver took it without his knowledge.”
Officers had visited the driver’s home, but he was not there.
Beetge said they were hopeful of making an arrest soon.