SIX members of the Catholic Church in Chingola have died while 26 others are nursing injuries after a road traffic accident involving three vehicles. And First Lady Esther Lungu is saddened by the loss of life in the accident, which happened on Sunday evening on Kitwe – Chingola road in Misenga area. Confirming the fatalities in an interview yesterday, Copperbelt Commissioner of Police Charity Katanga said the mishap happened when a Rosa bus hit into a stationary truck.
Mrs Katanga said the driver of the bus, James Simpemba, hit into the stationary Volvo truck before the Toyota vehicle which was following behind also hit into the bus. “The Rosa bus hit into a stationary truck, and in the process the car which was following behind also hit into the bus,” she said. She said five of the six people died on the spot while one died minutes after arriving at Nchanga South Hospital in Chingola. Mrs Katanga identified the dead as Mr Simpemba, passengers Bupe Chikwanda, Regina Bwale and Haggai Nkandu.
The co-driver of the bus and another unknown man were also among those who died. Mrs Katanga said despite the third vehicle being extensively damaged, no-one died but that the driver, Oscar Mambwe, escaped with finger injuries. Chingola District Commissioner Mary Chibesa said the passengers on the bus were choir members at one of the parishes in Chingola who were returning from a church function in Kitwe. Catholic Church national spokesperson Father Winfield Kunda said he was yet to receive a report about any Catholic Church group being involved in an accident. Meanwhile, the First Lady has described the accident as sad.
Mrs Lungu is also concerned about the escalating levels of crime in Kitwe after the stabbing to death of Copperbelt University lecturer Maximillian Mainza. The First Lady urged police in the district to continue working tirelessly to ensure that the levels of crime are controlled. Meanwhile, a 42-year-old man of Wajitalanga village in Chief Chizera’s area in Mufumbwe district has died after being attacked by a crocodile while fishing on Kabompo River. North-Western Province Commissioner of Police Hudson Namachila said in an interview that the incident happened on Friday around 16:00 hours and identified the dead man as Edward Ndeke.
Mr Namachila said the matter was reported to Mufumbwe Police Station on Sunday around 15:00 hours. “We had a report to the effect that Edward Ndeke, aged 42, was attacked by a crocodile as he was fishing on Kabompo River,” he said. Mr Namachila said the victim sustained severe body injuries. He said the body of Mr Ndeke is in Mufumbwe District Hospital mortuary awaiting burial because police do not suspect any foul play.