SIX children from the same family died during a baptism ceremony near Sadza, a town about 150 km south-east of the capital Harare, Zimbabwe police say today (Wednesday.)
National police spokesperson, Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba, confirmed the incident which took place on Tuesday and said two suspects ‑ Maud Dzvuke, 30, and Jane Ruvinga, 34, who were reportedly in charge of the baptism ceremony ‑ had been arrested.
She said the two had taken nine children to a nearby stream for the baptism ceremony.
“During baptism, one of the juveniles, aged four years, ran away from the stream and met another one. Both were shivering because of the cold,” Charamba said.
She said the two were in a critical condition in hospital.
A source, who did not want to be identified said: “They were baptising eight children from the same family. Each time the children were immersed in water, they came out shivering. But the women insisted that they were possessed by demons.
“These children could have all died, but only two managed to get help quickly and were taken to hospital. That’s how they were saved. The other ones were not so lucky. They didn’t make it.”
The children who died were two boys and four girls, aged between one and nine. They were Tafadzwa Dzvuke, 5, Tinotenda Dzvuke, 3, Shamiso Pfumbidza, 4, Patience Pfumbidza, 9, Blessed Muvadi, 12 months, and Emmanuel Dzvuke, 7.
After the incident, their bodies were taken to a homestead. Attempts to resuscitate them, failed. – ANA edited by Patience Rusere