Student Nicci Redelinghuys, who purportedly took a series of selfies while driving, has been grounded.
Her father Dean spoke to News24 and confirmed that his 20-year-old daughter had been “disciplined”.
“No one will be speaking to her. I have closed down all her social media accounts and taken her cellphones away. She is locked up at home,” he said curtly.
Nicci Redelinghuys purportedly posted “selfie” pictures of herself driving in various poses, which raised the ire of road safety and community activism groups.
The caption reads: “So yesterday I was driving on the N3 trying to take a selfie. lol. I kept looking at the camera and forgetting to watch the road! But I guess I finally got it kind of right! I still look scared as shit.”
He said that his daughter claimed she had not taken the picture of herself while driving on a freeway, as was stated in the picture’s caption.
“She insists that she wasn’t driving and all of this is a result of a prank that was played by one of her friends. I don’t know what to think and I have not had the chance to sit down with her and discuss the issue properly,” he said.
“I think it was a childish exercise on her part and it has done a huge amount of damage. I am completely aware of the seriousness of this issue and I have dealt with it.”
In one of her Facebook posts, which has since been removed, she described herself as a professional driver who had been tutored by her father.
“What she said has direct implications for me because I was mentioned and I do participate in rally events. We know how serious the situation is on our roads with fatal accidents and there is carnage on the roads every day.
“I have spent four years teaching previously disadvantaged mechanics how to properly service taxis and alike and what she put on Facebook has undone all of my hard work,” Redelinghuys said.
“I cannot believe how far those pictures have spread.”
On Wednesday the KwaZulu-Natal Transport Department issued a statement condemning Redelinghuys’s “irresponsible” behaviour.
The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Transport has slammed the “irresponsible behaviour” of a Durban student whose selfies taken while driving went viral on Wednesday.
Nicci Redelinghuys posted a picture on Facebook which she purports to have taken of herself while driving on the freeway.
The caption reads: “So yesterday I was driving on the N3 trying to take a selfie. lol. I kept looking at the camera and forgetting to watch the road! But I guess I finally I got it kind of right! I still look scared as shit.”
Her picture quickly spread across social media, and was reposted repeatedly by social activism and crime watch platforms.
Redelinghuys responded strongly to criticism levelled against her by posting other pictures taken while she was driving, including one sporting rude hand gestures.
In a comment on the original picture she purportedly wrote: “Bitches be bitches, unfortunately some ppl don’t understand that I drive like a pro! Thanks to dad 3 times SA champ!”
Transport department spokesperson Nathi Sukazi had stern words for the student.
“We strongly condemn irresponsible behaviour of any kind by anyone on our roads. Such conduct that deliberately endangers the lives of other road users should not be allowed to gain ground in our society especially given the continuing road carnage,” he said.
“We should all take a firm stance to put a stop to this illegal, suicidal and utterly irresponsible road user behaviour, and urge that no one copies it,” Sukazi added.
Justice Project South Africa tweeted the picture writing: “Is everyone this stupid? Don’t bother responding. It’s a rhetorical question.”
Repeated efforts to contact Redelinghuys for comment were unsuccessful at the time of publishing.