Nathi Mbatha (26) Never ever dreamt that his work could be his grave calling type.He woke up as usual gearing up to his work place little did he know it was his last day alive on earth.
Nathi suffocated after soil collapsed on him as he was digging a trench in Esselen Road in Etwatwa, Ekurhuleni to install sewerage pipes.
Angry residents said the municipality gave the tender to an inexperienced contractor who didn’t put up a retaining wall, although the area has a lot of water.
“This is all about kickbacks for buddies,” said residents.The workers said they have been at the site for three months.They said the soil almost collapsed on them at another site last week.
“We are forced to continue working because we need jobs.”Workers said they put a rope around Nathi to pull him out but emergency services arrived and told them to get away.
“Then the soil collapsed and we couldn’t see him anymore,” said one.“I’m haunted by his screams.
“If emergency services hadn’t interrupted us, Nathi might still be alive.”Nathi’s body was retrieved at about 10pm on Monday.
Emergency services spokesman William Ntladi said immediately after the workers left the trench there was another collapse.
“If we had allowed them to stay there, we could have lost six people.”Emergency workers put up their own retaining wall.
Nathi’s family said they were not ready to speak to the public as yet,His body was taken to a government mortuary.
Councillor Patricia Mabuza told the People’s Paper she was also looking for answers.The construction company referred us to the municipality for comment.
Themba Gadebe of Ekurhuleni Municipality said they will investigate who hired the contractor.An inquest docket was opened at
Etwatwa Police Station.