Komphela has served as MEC for police, roads and traffic and health in the province, while nationally, he has chaired the National Assembly Sports Committee. This is a developing story.
Brandfort Magistrates Court has sentenced former Free State MEC Butana Komphela of the Free State Police, Department of Roads and Transport to three years in prison for murder.
The sentence has been suspended for five years. On January 6, 2019, Komphela, 65, was found guilty of manslaughter after his BMW collided with a Volkswagen Polo between Theunissen and Bloemfontein.
Komphela’s BMW swerved and crossed the barrier, colliding with the Polo, which was travelling in the opposite direction.
The polo carrying five passengers, including Samuel Manyova, rolled several times. Manyova died at the scene and other passengers suffered minor injuries. The court rejected the former MEC’s version of the crash that killed Mayova.
Parady Shupin, a spokesman for the Free State State Prosecution Service, said that while Komphela claimed the Volkswagen had pulled into his driveway and that the sun was blocking his view, prosecutors disagreed.
Prosecutor Mpoti Chalele told the court it was impossible for the Polo driver to be at fault.
Charler relied on accident scene experts to find no damage to the Volkswagen’s front corners, confirming that BMW had driven into it.
According to experts at the accident scene, the cause of the accident could only be human error, as the vehicle had no mechanical failure and the road was in good condition.
“It was Mr Komphela who swerved to an oncoming vehicle while travelling at about 150km/h in an 80km/h zone. The accused is a former MEC in charge of the province’s roads, which he knew was a high accident area.
“The sun couldn’t have kept him from seeing other vehicles because the accident happened around 14:00,” Chalelle argued in court.
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