By Anna Shilongo
Four Zimbabwean nationals were killed in a collision between a 27-seater minibus heading for Windhoek from Harare and a heavy truck early Monday morning. The four died on the spot.
Another 13 passengers were seriously injured.
On the bus were students on their way to Windhoek for a sporting event, members of the public as well as school children whose parents work in Windhoek.
According to the owner of the Iveco minibus, Kelvin Harry, four people died on the spot including the driver. The accident apparently took place at Nata in Botswana around 03h00 on Monday.
Harry said the other 13 passengers injured in the accident are in a stable condition except three who were admitted to a Botswana hospital. He said the rest of the passengers were transported back to Harare yesterday.
“All the fatalities are Zimbabwean nationals and their next of kin are informed. We have made arrangements to transport passengers who are in a stable condition,” said Harry.
“Unfortunately I can’t release any names although the next of kin are informed. Plans are under way and we are currently in the process of arranging with the Bo-tswana authorities to repatriate the bodies to Harare, by later today or tomorrow,” he explained.
Harry said he would carry some of the expenses and that the Motor Vehicle Fund has also agreed to cover some expenses for bereaved families.
According to an eyewitness account, the truck driver left his lane and encroached into the on-coming traffic lane leading to the head-on collision with the minibus carrying 27 passengers.
The truck hit the left side of the driver and all passengers that were sitting on the left side of the vehicle were seriously injured, while others died.
Harry would not say whether any Namibians were involved in the accident but some sources believe there were two Namibian students coming from a university in Zimbabwe.
Unconfirmed reports say the two Namibian students also died in the accident.
The sources also revealed that four passengers died on the spot including the driver while another passenger died later in hospital.
Parents, especially those who were expecting their children from Zimbabwe, are anxious to know their children’s fate.
Meanwhile, police public relations officer, Warrant Officer Kauna Shikwambi, confirmed the accident. She said there were Namibians involved in the accident that claimed five lives.
“We cannot tell in what condition they are as we are still waiting for Interpol to respond,” said Shikwambi.