Lightning wipes out family


A BIKITA woman and her two children, together with four other kids — two of them from the same family — were on Monday evening killed after a bolt of lightning struck two huts they were in during a heavy thunderstorm, burning them beyond recognition.

Tatenda Chitagu
Own Correspondent

A witness, Gilbert Zivengwa, said the seven died on Monday evening at around 5pm as it rained in Mugwinyi village under Chief Mazungunye area.

The deceased are Marian Nebvumwe (32), her kids Fadzai and Gloria Chenjerai, aged 11 and five respectively, siblings Claudio and Crywind Mugwinyi, aged four and six respectively, Audrey Masunda (four) and Esther Muchakayera aged five.

Zivengwa said the lightning bolt struck Marian, who was in her bedroom hut, as well as the other children who were playing in the kitchen hut.

“I went to the scene to investigate after I saw some unusually heavy and thick smoke from the huts,” he said.

“When I arrived, the roofs of the huts had already collapsed and the children were crying for help. I called other villagers who came to the scene, but there was not much we could do as the roofs had already fallen in.

“It is so sad.”

All the occupants were burnt beyond recognition.

Other elders in the area expressed shock yesterday, describing the incident as an “ominous sign”.

Police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba confirmed the incident, saying the deceased were taken to Silveira Mission Hospital mortuary ahead of their burial.