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“The number is now 29,” confirmed Mpumalanga province Safety Department Spokesman Joseph Mabuza.
The bus was travelling from Pretoria when it collided with a truck which had swerved out of its lane, Mabuza said.
Local media reports said the truck driver attempted to avoid a stationary bus when driving on a road in the eastern province of Mpulanga, but collided with a second bus coming in the opposite direction.
The South African Transport Ministry has launched a high level investigation into the accident.
“We are looking into moving the transportation of heavy goods from road to rail to reduce the number of trucks on the road networks,” said Ministry Spokesperson Tiyani Rikhotso.
South African President Jacob Zuma on Tuesday sent condolences to the families of those affected while asking for a speedy probe into the accident.
“This carnage must stop. It is completely unacceptable!” said President Zuma.
“The fact that this particular road has gained notoriety in the deaths of our people means there’s something wrong that we need to address together. We therefore urge witnesses to assist the investigation into the cause of the collision, which has been announced by the Minister of Transport.
“We also urge the law enforcement authorities to swiftly get to the bottom of the causes of this tragedy and the law must be firm on those found to have flouted any rules and regulations of the road, leading to such high fatalities,” added the president.
Among the injured, 11 people were in a critical condition and receiving treatment in hospital.