Good samaritans open their hearts to stranger

Marcelle Maritz (FF+ Councillor) and James Coomes.

MOKOPANE – James Coomes (68) was recently mugged at a vegetable stall at a bus station in Johannesburg before travelling to Mokopane to find his brother. “I asked the bus driver to wait for me because I wanted to buy fruit for the road. That is where I got mugged,” said Coomes.

Bosveld’s staff saw Coomes standing at the traffic light at van Riebeeck and Hooge Street on Wednesday when they decided to lend a hand after seeing him holding a board asking for a lift or money to go back home to Cape Town.

Coomes said he saved up all his pension money to find his brother after his mother’s death and travelled all the way from Cape Town to do so. His journey led him to Upington, Katoo and Braamfontein where he went to his brother’s recent workplace, Transnet. They told him that his brother now lives in Mokopane at the Piet Potgieter Ouetehuis.

He then travelled to Johannesburg per bus where he was mugged. “I can remember falling on my behind all of a sudden and seeing a gang taking my backpack, my cell phone and my laptop.

“I also carried a moonbag around my waist where I kept my money and with the fall they saw it and used a knife to cut it off of me.

“They stole all of my money. I pleaded with them to at least give my phone back but they refused.

“Luckily my bus ticket and bus card fell on the floor,” Coomes explained.

He also said that there was a police officer at the bus station to whom he went for help. “I talked to a constable who told me that they cannot help me even after I told her that the person who robbed me is still standing at the stall and that I can show her. She refused to help me,” he further said.

According to him after his arrival in Mokopane he went to Home Affairs to ask about his brother and they could not assist him.

He then went to the Mokopane police where an unknown officer helped him and even got his clothes washed at the dry cleaners.

They took him to Home Affairs once again where they told him that his brother died two years ago.

Thanks to Marcelle Maritz, a Councillor of the FF+, Coomes got a bus ticket and money for food after she asked for a helping hand from Fanie Kemp, who gave him money to return to his home in Goodwood, Cape Town.

Coomes thanks everyone for their kind help to assure his safety.

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Lionél van Wyk

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