SA Rugby mourns loss of 20-year-old student killed in Boks victory parade accident
Minentle Noqhamka was allegedly struck by a police Nyala during the Springboks' victory parade in East London.
South Africa’s lock Eben Etzebeth, centre, gestures from a bus during the Springboks Champions trophy tour in Cape Town on 3 November after South Africa won the 2023 Rugby World Cup final match against New Zealand. (Photo by Rodger Bosch / AFP)
SA Rugby said it is saddened by the death of a 20-year-old Walter Sisulu University student during the Springboks‘ tour celebrating their World Cup triumph.
Minentle Noqhamka, from Mbizana, was allegedly struck by a police Nyala (a 4×4 armoured personnel carrier) this month during the Springboks’ victory parade in East London.
Eastern Cape health department spokesperson Sizwe Kupelo confirmed Noqhamka died in Frere Hospital’s ICU on Tuesday.
In a statement, SA Rugby President Mark Alexander regretted the incident: “SA Rugby is deeply saddened by news of a tragic incident during the festivities celebrating South Africa’s 2023 Rugby World Cup victory tour.
“We extend our heartfelt condolences to Minentle Noqhamka’s family and friends after her life was so abruptly cut short by this terrible accident. The trophy tour celebration was to share the joy of success and victory to have it end in sorrow for this family is awful. We share the family’s grief,” Alexander said.
It is understood that the police Nyala drove over Noqhamka’s leg as public order police were trying to move Bok captain, Siya Kolisi, and his team out of the hall’s gates on 5 November, according to News24.
Rugby World Cup
The Springboks sent South Africans into wild celebrations when they beat New Zealand in the Rugby World Cup final in France, winning the tournament for a record fourth time.
Streets across the county turned green and gold with supporters celebrating the Springboks‘ magnificent triumph.
Springbok captain Kolisi thanked fans for their support.
“Thank you to the people of South Africa, we as a team chose to dedicate this World Cup to the people of South Africa. You are the reason that we are where we are today. You don’t ever give up. We, as the Springboks, are very diverse like the people of South Africa, and we just wanted to show diversity is our strength in South Africa,” Kolisi said.