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Tynwald High School accident victims get an emotional send off

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By Darlington Gatsi

THEY travelled together, died together and now rest together, side by side for eternity.

A convoy of cars stretched along Domboshava road to Glen Forest Memorial Park to lay to rest six Tynwald High students who perished in an accident that occured in Nyanga last Friday night.

The children died when a school bus they were travelling in veered off the road and overturned after the driver failed to negotiate a curve.

Anesuishe Hove (14), Beyonce Guyo (15), Anita Manyuka (16), Destiny Dziva (14), Kimberly Mutusva (15) and Craig Madanhire (14) died in the horrific accident.

The accident marked another sad day for the country’s education sector since a similar accident that claimed 84 lives of Regina Coeli Mission students in 1991.

Politicians, socialites, students and families thronged the cemetery to bid farewell to the deceased students in an emotion laden ceremony.

Government through the permanent secretary in the Ministry of education described the deaths of the students as sad, especially coming from the period of virulent Covid-19 that claimed two students in the country.

“This loss that we are gathered here to conclude in a way in terms of interring our dear children is a very painful loss to us as the education fraternity. For us just to understand how devastating this incident has been to us as a ministry, I want us to think of one simple statistic that I was looking at.

“We all know that there was Covid-19 pandemic which destroyed so many lives and for the Ministry we only lost two children to Covid-19 but today just one second has given us loss of six lives,” she said.

Foxes, as the Tynwald High students are popularly known, wept uncontrollably as the deceased’s caskets were lowered into the graves marking a sad ending to the young lives.

The burial of the students coincided with the commencement of Ordinary and Advanced Level exams with the school authorities pledging to give counselling services to the students.

Representing the ministry of State for Harare province, Tafadzwa Muguti said the government would render financial assistance to families that lost their children without disclosing the amount.

“These are lives that have been cut short. We are trying to think as a government what could we have done to save these lives. I want to urge the headmaster and staff to help other students, this is a very shocking time. We will do everything we can as a government to support the families in any way possible. As part of our civil protection act, we have contributed money that will go directly to the school and families will be alerted,” said Muguti.

In an overflow of emotions, tears flooded as parents watched in disbelief and pain their young children buried after leaving for an educational trip only to return in caskets.

Anita Manyuka, who teachers said was destined for greatness in basketball, could not live to witness her budding sporting career blossoming into perhaps representing the country.

Craig Madanhire, the only boy to die in the accident, could not live to witness his career in cricket which was shooting up as his life was cut short.