Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Apostolic sect members struck by lightning

A member of the African Apostolic Church (Mwazha) died, while several others were injured after being struck by lightning at a shrine in Chitungwiza on Monday.

Archbishop Ernest Paul Mwazha
Archbishop Ernest Paul Mwazha

Tragedy struck while members of the Mwazha Apostolic Church were attending an evening prayer session at an open space in Nyatsime.

Chief police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba confirmed the incident and urged members of the public to take precautionary measures during the rainy season.

“The Zimbabwe Republic Police has noted with concern recent cases of fatalities as a result of lightning occurring around the country,” she said.

“The most recent case occurred in Chitungwiza on 25 January 2016 at around 1830hrs.

“Following a heavy down pour, the congregation was struck by lightning. Five people sustained burns and were ferried to Chitungwiza Central Hospital where one was pronounced dead. The other three are in a stable condition, while the other one is critical.”

Charamba said people should avoid seeking shelter under tall trees, avoid contact with electrical gadgets and avoid being a sole target at an open space when it is raining.

Earlier this month, a woman from Bulilima in Matabeleland South died and a 33-year-old man was severely burnt when three homesteads in the area were struck by lightning.

Gugulethu Dube (23), failed to escape from a burning hut and was burnt beyond recognition, while Bigboy Tshuma, who was in a separate hut at the same homestead, was severely burnt in an incident that occurred at Dupute Village in Makhulela Ward.

Eight people also died last year after they were struck by lightning in separate incidents in two days.