The body of 20-year-old Chitungwiza man Tinotenda Nhau, who was swept away after attempting to cross a flooded bridge along Nyatsime River five days ago, has been found.
By Phyllis Mbanje
Police spokesperson for Harare province Assistant Inspector Memory Pamire confirmed that his body was recovered on Saturday around 11am floating on the banks of the river, four kilometres away from where tragedy struck.
“According to information on hand, the deceased was swept away on February 2 while trying to cross the bridge which was flooded following the heavy rains that pounded most parts of the country,” she said.
Witnesses said, while some of his friends managed to cling on to reeds, Tinotenda was swept away by the rushing torrents of water.
Initially, several attempts by a search party consisting of the police, family and community members yielded nothing.
Since then, his family had been repeatedly going down to the river scouring for the body of their relative.
However, their efforts were constantly hampered by the heavy downpours.
Residents expressed concern over the state of most bridges which need to be reconstructed to avoid further loss of life.
Since the beginning of the rainy season several people have drowned while attempting to cross flooded rivers.
“We are concerned at the rate at which lives are being lost through drowning and are appealing to the community to take heed and desist from crossing flooded rivers,” said Inspector Pamire.
The police spokesperson said the incessant rains had flooded many bridges and therefore caution should be exercised when crossing such points.
“The members of the public are being urged not to attempt to cross flooded rivers to avoid unnecessary loss of life. Motorists too should observe this
warning,” she said. Meanwhile the department of Meteorological Services has warned of flooding as heavy rainfall is still expected in most parts of the country which include Mashonaland, Matabeleland North, Midlands and Manicaland provinces.