Earlier this year, my uncle was involved in a car crash with the wife of a powerful South African politician (Gwede Mantashe). Bump in the knight is his story. I first published the story in February, when my uncle started experiencing “challenges” with Mrs Mantashe’s insurance. Essentially, they were refusing to pay out because they said the collision had been my uncle’s fault.
My uncle has never been the same since the day of the accident. He still has nightmares. And his body just doesn’t function the way it used to. He was an angry man for a long time. He felt that the insurance company’s attitude was disingenuous, to say the least. The way he tells it, he was out early in the morning on his way for a routine check up at the local hospital.
There’s a notorious intersection in Reiger Park, that is known as a death trap because of all the accidents. To make matters worse, as the sun began to rise, the traffic lights (or robots as we like to call them in South Africa) were out. He checked both directions for any oncoming traffic. It was clear. But as he moved into the middle of the road he heard a loud bang!
It was only much later that he discovered that it was Mantashe’s wife who drove into him. And then it became personal. He knew Mantashe from the struggle days. They had been comrades in arms in the union movement. Yet, even after he found out who his wife had crashed into, Mantashe couldn’t so much as pick up the phone to check up on an old friend. That’s my uncle’s gripe, anyway.