A female taxi boss has been accused of beating her driver to a pulp with the help of three men and leaving him brain dead.
Thami Tebele, 35, died in hospital a week after he was assaulted, allegedly by the woman and her gang, because a white Toyota Venture in his possession was stolen.
The incident happened in Block T in Soshanguve, north of Pretoria, last week. Tebele was apparently taken from his home in Block X after reporting to his employer that the car he was driving had been stolen.
He never returned home. On Wednesday, his sister reported him missing to the police who found him severely injured in Block T. Tebele had been working as a driver for his boss for hardly a month.
According to Tebele’s sister Brenda, the woman showed up with three men at their home demanding to see her brother but he had gone to the shops.
She said the men were aggressive and impatient. Brenda said when her brother arrived, one of the men grabbed him violently and they drove away with him in a silver grey Audi.
“I became worried when hours went by and my brother had not come back home,” she said. The taxi driver was rescued a day later at his boss’s house where he had been assaulted and was transported to a local clinic. He was then referred to Dr George Mukhari Hospital where doctors declared him brain dead and placed him on life support. “We have been informed that my brother died yesterday. It is painful for us,” Tebele said.
She said the taxi boss’s brother had called the family to apologise and offered to pay for the burial.
Tebele’s pictures, taken after he was rescued, show him lying on a stretcher with his body covered in bruises. “I don’t want their money. The apologies will not bring back Thami’s smile. I want justice,” Brenda said.
She said the family was angry that the woman suspected of killing her brother had not been arrested. “I don’t want revenge. I just want to see her behind bars,” she said.
Gauteng police spokesperson Mavela Masondo said a case of attempted murder was initially opened at the Rietgat police station, however it was converted to murder. Masondo said no arrests had been made as investigations were still under way to establish how many suspects were involved in Tebele’s assault. Yesterday, Tebele’s wife Tshepang Mogomotsi said she would be left to raise their three children aged six, eight and 12 years all by herself now. “I am so broken. I just want to see that woman in jail,” Mogomotsi said.
She described her husband as a calm person and a loving father.
“He was always joking and laughing with the children,” Mogomotsi said.
When contacted yesterday the taxi boss refused to comment.