13 Prisoners Struck By Lightning While Having Lunch

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Matabeleland North Correspondent

Police have released names of 13 inmates who were struck and injured by a bolt of lightning at Hwange Prison.

The incident occurred last Friday when the 13 inmates convicts, were having lunch at Hwange Prison.

Four were seriously injured with third degree wounds and one of them Bhekimpilo Nowakhe (28) was bleeding from the mouth.

They were rushed to St Patricks’ Hospital also in Hwange where they were admitted.

Four of them were supposed to be transferred to Bulawayo for specialized medical care.

In a statement, police said the inmates were admitted under prison guard.

They are Nowakhe, Jackson Tshuma (23), Dennis Matshazi (35) Mpilo Sibanda (47), Ethian Nyambosi (30), Liviticus Sichoni (25),Karlos Dube (23, Mduduzi Ncube (24), Mkhululi Moyo (28), Tumani Surichiri (22), Foster Mpofu (23), Marshal Tshuma (22) and Milton Dube (28).

“On 19 November and at Hwange Prison at 12:05 hours, 20 inmates were having lunch within Hwange Prison premises at medium section yard under a huge tree. While the 20 were having their lunch a bolt of lightning struck and injured 13 of them,” said the police.

Twelve of them sustained some minor injuries with burns all over the body and Nowakhe was bleeding from the nose.

All the affected are males and others were neither struck nor injured. A report was made at ZRP Hwange and scene was attended.

The injured were taken to St Patricks’ Hospital where they were admitted under prison guard.

Hwange Prison is located on a hilly place surrounded by mostly mopane trees.

The incident comes as the Meteorological Services Department has warned about hearvy rains and strong winds that can blow off roofs.

Some parts of the country have been receiving rains in the past few days.

Members of the public have been encouraged to stay at home if possible and avoid working in the fields when it’s raining.