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Police seek help to identify burnt bodies

By Sukulwenkosi Dube- Matutu

Police in Matabeleland South Province have appealed for assistance from members of the public in identification of five bodies that were burnt beyond recognition in two separate incidents and are being held at the United Bulawayo Hospitals.

Chief Insp Philisani Ndebele
Chief Insp Philisani Ndebele

In a statement Matabeleland South provincial police spokesperson Chief Inspector Philisani Ndebele said three of the bodies were passengers burnt to death after a Brooklyn Bus they were travelling in caught fire at West Nicholson area in November.

The other two, he said, were burnt beyond recognition when a vehicle caught fire in Ngundu area along the Masvingo-Beitbridge Road last month.

“As police we are appealing to members of the public who might be missing their relatives and suspect that they could have been on board the Brooklyn Bus which caught fire on 15 November last year.

“There are three unidentified bodies that are housed at the United Bulawayo Hospitals Mortuary. The bus was travelling from Zvishavane to Musina and it passed through Filabusi, Mbalabala, Gwanda, Colleen Bawn and West Nicholson before the inferno.

“We also have bodies of two adults housed at the same mortuary.

“They were also burnt to death after a South African registered Ford Bantam vehicle they were travelling in caught fire along the Masvingo-Beitbridge Road on January 20.

“Those who might be relatives to these unidentified people should contact me Chief Inspector Ndebele on 0715 431 235 or 0773 594 899 or on landline 02842-22810. They can also visit any police station near to them,” he said.

Chief Insp Ndebele said in last month’s incident, a family was travelling from Harare to South Africa and are suspected to have picked up two passengers along the way.

He said while the vehicle was travelling along the Masvingo- Beitbridge Road in Ngundu area at around 2AM the driver lost control of the vehicle and it hit a tree before the car burst into flames and all occupants were burnt beyond recognition.

On November 15, last year 32 people, mainly cross border traders, were burnt beyond recognition after a Brooklyn Bus there were travelling in from Zvishavane to Musina in South Africa burst into flames.

The incident occurred at around 11PM.

The fire is suspected to have started after a gas cylinder exploded. The Chronicle