The Bulldog is taking on the motor industry behemoth of Ford next year. Advocate Gerrie Nel announced at an AfriForum press conference on Wednesday that he will be seeking a private prosecution against the company, on behalf of the Jimmy family.
Why Gerrie Nel is taking on Ford
Sat alongside Nel, Renisha Jimmy – whose brother was killed when his Ford Kuga caught fire back in 2015 – told the media that the vehicle manufacturers initially offered a R1 million car to the family, if they said that Reshall died as the result of a gunshot wound.
The advocate lambasted this show of “corporate bullying”, and vowed to fight for justice on behalf of the Jimmys after they were apparently “abandoned’ by the judicial system. The NPA made a decision not to prosecute Ford after the tragedy was reported.
“In this case, the criminal justice system of South Africa has abandoned the victim. The family has been waiting for nearly three years to investigate the case and we are surprised that Ford discontinued all communication with the victims.” – Gerrie Nel.
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Ford Kuga safety record
Nel also revealed the group are waiting on a report regarding a similar incident with the Young family, who also saw their Kuga burst into flames. The model has a notorious history due to its flammability.
“We trust this information will confirm the family’s version of the events around the fire, including the fire caused by a mechanical error. It is interesting that Ford, as far as we know, has obtained two expert reports on the possible cause of the fire, but none of them has been made available to the family and/or the SAPS.”
AfriForum claim they have secured a court date for 4 February 2019. Ford issued a very brief press statement on Wednesday, confirming they’ve begun a formal investigation into the case. But Gerrie Nel and his team aren’t very impressed with the company’s conduct.
He’s criticised them for making “no real attempt” to communicate either with AfriForum or the family themselves. The case will head to the Western Cape High Court in little over two months’ time.
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