A 63-year-old man drowned in Mabonyane River near Maphisa Growth Point, Matobo District in Matabeleland South province while attempting to cross the river which was flooded.
He was in the company of two other men. The deceased, Nhlanganiso Tshuma, a villager under Chief Fuyana was swept away by the floods on Thursday and his body was found the following day about 5km from the bridge by the riverside. A video of Tshuma being swept away is circulating on social media. Matabeleland South police spokesperson Inspector Loveness Mangena confirmed the incident.
“The incident happened on Thursday as the now deceased attempted to cross a river in flood and when he was halfway through, he was overpowered by the water and swept away,” said Insp Mangena.
Tshuma was allegedly coming from Maphisa Growth Point on his way home. There were cars and people who were waiting for the river to subside when the three decided to cross, and he was swept away halfway through the bridge.
Insp Mangena said people should never take chances with flooded rivers, saying they risk losing their lives. She said people should always wait for rivers to subside before attempting to cross.
The current rains have also seen a video of a donkey-drawn scotch cart being swept away while trying to cross a flooded river. A video of a donkey-drawn scotch cart surfaced yesterday, showing donkeys and the scotch- cart carrying firewood being swept away by floods at a narrow bridge along the Bulawayo Solusi road. The incident is said to have taken place on Friday and two men who were on board the scotch cart escaped unhurt. Sources said a scotch-cart load of firewood fetches US$60 in the city, and most firewood traders come from the Solusi area, about 50km from Bulawayo.
In some videos circulating, bus and private cars drivers will be urged on by onlookers who will be whistling and cheering them on to cross flooded rivers, but police have warned drivers to desist from attempting to cross rivers that are in flood.
The country has lately been receiving significant amounts of rainfall and the Meteorological Service Department has warned the country’s citizens of dangers such as drowning and lightning while it is raining. Sunday News