By Rex Mphisa
THE bodies of 13 of the 14 Zimbabweans who died in a Marsmery bus accident in South Africa on May 6 arrived in the country yesterday through Beitbridge.
Initially 10 of the 13 bodies were brought in yesterday afternoon while SA officials sought clarification on the three which were expected later last night.
The fate of the 14th victim remained unclear.
A sombre mood hung over the border post as officials from the Registrar-General’s Office processed paperwork of the deceased.
The names of some of the 13 brought in yesterday were given as Patience Nyathi (35) born in Chiredzi, Thabile (5) and Nokuthaba Ncube both born in Johannesburg and travelling with
Patience Nyathi, Nyarai Chisaka (24) a lady from Chipinge and her child Tharia Zvotoona (1), Dakarai Makuyana (29) of Chipinge and Chipo Munjokodi (46) also of Chipinge.
Others are Priscillah Madhoji, Female (29) of Mwenezi and her year-old child Dalene Shonhayi who was undocumented and Salome Chipatiso (1) of Chivi both whose parents survived. The
remains of Sekai Madhuviko (42) of Masvingo were also brought in.
A church service for the deceased was held at Elim Hospital, Louis Tritchardt, about 15km off the N1 highway along which the accident occurred.
The bodies were brought aboard hearses from Nyaradzo Funeral Services, Zororo-Phumulani (Doves), Kings and Queens and Batanai Funerals .
“The identification process for the 12th Zimbabwean was done after 1600hrs on Friday and the identification process for the 13th was only done on Saturday.
Since the SA Department of Home Affairs was closed on Saturday and Sunday, their paperwork will only be processed starting tomorrow (today) and will be repatriated during the course
of the week,” said the accompanying document seen by the NewsDay.
The last two to die in the accident were identified as Luke Mangoma (40) of Chivi and Titos Maluleke (70) of Chiredzi.
The bus reportedly hit a railing before flipping over and landing on its side. The deceased were coming from shopping trips in SA and the accident blocked the N1 for more than seven hours as rescue workers tried to clear the highway.