7 confirmed dead as bus carrying Anglican pilgrims catches fire

Footage seen shows a Passion Link bus completely engulfed in flames with people screaming in the background

By Staff Reporter

At least 7 people died while 14 others were hospitalised with burns and fractures after a bus carrying some Anglican church pilgrims caught fire in Rusape on Sunday night.

The Anglican Diocese of Manicaland pilgrims were returning from the Bernard Mizeki Annual Festival in Marondera.

Footage seen shows a Passion Link bus, which was bound for Mutare, completely engulfed in flames with people screaming in the background.

Witnesses said the dead victims were burnt beyond recognition.

Reverend Father Edwin Selemani of the Anglican Church said seven people died at the scene and 14 others had been transported to hospital, some having suffered burns and others fractures from jumping out of the bus.

Selemani said four of the hospitalised individuals were in a critical condition.

Over 20,000 Anglicans made the annual pilgrimage to Bernard Mizeki’s grave in Marondera.

Mizeki, a Mozambique-born missionary, was murdered on June 18, 1896, by local spirit mediums, illustrating the conflict between traditional culture and Christian beliefs.

In a post on their official X handle, police confirmed the accident adding that they will be releasing details on the tragedy.

“The ZRP will be releasing information on a road traffic accident which occurred last night on 16 June 2024 in which a bus carrying pilgrims from Bernard Mzeki caught fire near Gandanzara, Rusape. More details will be released in due course,” police said.

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