‘She asked us to pray for her’ 

By Anita Dangazele

The joy of the Springboks World Cup victory has turned into sorrow for an Eastern Cape family whose daughter was run over by a police nyala during the Springboks parade in East London.

The first-year law student at the University of Fort Hare, Minentle Noqhamza, 20, died on Tuesday at East London’s Frere Hospital after sustaining injuries on both her legs.

Noqhamza’s left leg had to be amputated immediately after being admitted on Sunday, 5 November.

Her cousin, Lungelo Somtsewu who is also a student at the University said he received a call that his cousin had been injured.

“I immediately rushed to the scene. When I arrived, she was already in the ambulance and I was told she was being taken to Frere Hospital.

“I was told that Minentle was injured when the police vehicle was coming out of one of the gates at the back of City Hall.

“There were so many people which made it difficult for people to move. Her legs were injured and she could not be moved until the ambulance arrived.”

Somtsewu said when he arrived at the hospital, Noqhamza asked him to say a short prayer as she was in severe pain.

According to police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Siphokazi Mawisa, “Minentle jumped onto a moving police nyala”.

She said police were now investigating a case of culpable homicide. 

Buffalo City Metro spokesperson Samkelo Ngwenya said they were saddened by the tragedy.

“We were aware of the people injured as per the debriefing sessions held last week. Having planned the event meticulously and extensively as a city, together with the security cluster, this is the worst possible outcome,” Ngwenya said.

SA Rugby president Mark Alexander said: “SA Rugby is deeply saddened by the news of a tragic incident during the festivities celebrating SA’s 2023 Rugby World Cup victory tour.

“The trophy tour celebration was to share the joy of success and victory, and to have it end in sorrow for this family is awful. We share the family’s grief.” Alexander said.

The Noqhamza family is still deliberating over funeral arrangements.

Pictured above: Minentle Noqhamza.

Image source: Supplied


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