Bodies of Malawians killed in Tanzania bus crash repatriated

Malawian authorities in collaboration with their Tanzanian counterparts have finally repatriated the five bodies of Malawians killed Monday evening in a horrific road accident involving a Tanzania bus.

The accident, which also claimed the life of one Tanzanian, occurred along the Mbeya-Dar es Salaam highway, some 120kms from Mbeya City.

The bus, belonging to Easy Bus Services of Dar es Salaam, was travelling from Lilongwe to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania and had 28 passengers on board, of which 23 were Malawians.

According to Mbeya Regional Police Commander, Diwani Athumani, the accident happened when the driver wanted to avoid crashing into another bus that was overtaking it but quickly returned to its lane before finishing.COFFINS

He said the five, including a three-year-old baby boy, died on the spot while seven others were seriously injured and admitted to Ilembula Lutheran Hospital in Njombe District, Iringa Region.

The deceased boy’s mother is amongst the survivors who are currently being treated in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at the hospital.

A Malawian delegation comprising police and officials from the Immigration Department and Karonga District Council drove to Tanzania on Tuesday to repatriate the deceased and the survivors.

The team, with the assistance of their Tanzania counterparts, successfully transported the five bodies to Malawi and kept them at Karonga District Hospital Mortuary for identification and collection.

However, leader of the delegation, Chiza Chirambo from the District Council, said the survivors could not be immediately ferried home as they were in critical condition.

Of the five seriously injured Malawians, three are women and currently they are in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). One of them had her left arm amputated.

The other two survivors were relatively in better condition despite one other woman had all her fingers on left arm also amputated.

However, Chirambo said government was working on a suitable arrangement to have the five survivors transported to Karonga District Hospital so that they are close to their relatives for visists.

And on Wednesday morning, grief engulfed Karonga Hospital Mortuary as tens of family relations and friends converged to collect bodies of their departed loved ones which arrived in the wee hours in total disbelief.

Only four bodies were taken to their homes in Blantyre, Mulanje and Balaka respectively for burial on Thursday while the fourth one of Walusako Mwamlima Nkomanje was laid to rest in Mzuzu on the same day.

But the fifth body of the three-year-old baby, whose mother has been identified as 25-year-old Esther Ndau, is still at the mortuary waiting for family members to collect it.

Chirambo said the baby is believed to be from Timbiri village in the area of TA Timbiri in Nkhata Bay District.

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