Music star, Sasa Klaas lived her life surrounded by family, friends and fans who loved and adored her. But when she took her last breath exactly a year ago, on 5th March 2021 she died at the back of a Land Cruiser pick-up truck (cargo bed) somewhere along the 100-kilometer harsh and unforgiving terrain of the Kgalagadi Desert, in the company of total strangers who hardly knew her name and only referred to her as “my sister”.
Before the five hours or so arduous trek from the accident scene to Sojwe clinic, the injured Sasa Klaas was left alone for hours next to the helicopter wreckage at the mercy of wild beasts, while the pilot, Leonard Matenje went to seek help.
The helicopter crash investigation report quotes Matenje saying “as he was walking to the nearby farm to seek assistance, he was worried about the passenger’s safety as he could hear the sounding of jackals in the vicinity.”
The report, however slams Matenje for dumping Sasa Klaas on strangers instead of accompanying her on the more than 100-kilometer trip to Sojwe clinic.
“None of the employees (including even the Ranch Manager) knew the passenger 9Sasa Klaas). They were even addressing her simply as “my sister,” because they did not know her name. The PIC (Pilot in Charge, Matenje) was the only person at the Ranch who
knew her and likewise the only person known by the passenger. With such
background as this and irrespective of what was the actual relationship between the duo, in all fairness, even if the PIC felt fine physically so as not to need medical attention immediately, he was the most suited person to accompany the passenger and nurse/comfort her. That would have been the honourable thing to do, the golden rule! For the PIC to have decided to remain behind on that fateful night leaves everybody wondering and guessing.”
The investigators suspect that Matenje stayed behind and did not accompany Sasa Klaas to Sojwe Clinic because he wanted to sanitize the accident scene.
“While members of the general public may have various interpretations of their own for this action or lack thereof by the PIC, from the point of view of investigation, an intent to remove crucial evidence (directly or indirectly, by delegation) that might have further aided the investigation cannot be ruled out……, the fact that the PIC chose neither to accompany the passenger (and comfort her on the way to the clinic as the only person she knew that night) nor to go seek medical attention himself suggests there was another mission to be accomplished at the site/Ranch”, states the report.
The investigators further stated that, “preservation of human life was an after event/process and therefore had nothing to do with the causation of this occurrence. However, the post-crash management of the situation (or the moral conduct by the PIC after the crash) was found wanting or questionable.”