By Tendai Gukutikwa and Nyasha Mapasa
The deputy administrative assistant to the Bishop of the United Methodist Church, Reverend Duncan Charwadza and his wife Janet Charwadza (nee Riziti), who both perished in a road accident on Wednesday night, were laid to rest at their rural home in Rowa, Mutare, yesterday.
The accident, which occurred at the 140km peg along the Mutare-Harare highway, claimed the life of the reverend, his wife, Edwin Kudzaishe (26) and their driver Joice Mushamiri (26).
The victims were travelling in an Isuzu KB 205, which veered off the road after side-swiping a haulage truck.
Police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the driver of the Isuzu truck encroached into the opposite lane in a bid to overtake a haulage truck and side-swiped the haulage truck in the process.
The Isuzu then overturned four times, resulting in the death of the four.
Their bodies were later taken to Rusape General Hospital mortuary.
Ass Comm Nyathi said the haulage truck driver escaped unscathed.
Reverend Charwadza was 56 years old, while his wife Janet was 52 years old.
He was ordained in 2001.
When they met their fate, the Rev and his wife had just been picked up from the airport in Harare. They had landed from Dubai earlier that day.
The couple had travelled to Dubai on November 29 with Bishop Nhiwatiwa and other church leaders for a Christmas retreat.
In an interview on the sidelines of the burial, head of the Zimbabwe Episcopal area of the United Methodist Church, Bishop Eben Nhiwatiwa, said the reverend and his wife will be sadly missed.
“They will both be sadly missed by the entire United Methodist Church family. We would like to convey our deepest condolences to the Charwadza and Riziti families,” he said.
He described the late reverend as a superb leader who did his job diligently. Rev Charwadza, he said, was an invaluable asset in the United Methodist Church.
“His role in the church was very central, he was serving in the connectional ministries, where he was the director. His post involved co-ordinating all ministries in the church and when Cyclone Idai hit our country, he became the cornerstone to organise, centralise and link up with relevant authorities for the donations towards the affected people,” said Bishop Nhiwatiwa.
The bishop also said the reverend was always calm and never panicked during critical situations.
In an interview, brother to the late Janet Charwadza, Artwell Maziti, described the late couple as loving people. The couple is survived by three children. The Sunday Mail