Danamombe High School’s Yutong bus that had been hired to ferry worshippers to a church service at Mutendi Shrine in Masvingo rural on Sunday was burnt to a shell in a bizarre incident.
The bus which was bought at a cost of over US$145 000 was burnt after a whirlwind swept away fire that was lit by congregants.
The fire was blown onto tents before it leapt onto a kombi which was parked beside the bus resulting in the bus itself catching fire.
The Masvingo provincial police spokesperson could neither confirm nor deny the matter when contacted for comment by The Mirror.
Danamombe head Emmanuel Muvengu confirmed the incident but referred further questions to Chivi District Schools Inspector Isaac Gwamuri.
ZCC Mutendi spokesperson Raymond Muringani confirmed the incident and said negotiations on the way forward between the church and the school are underway. He said:
On October 16 we attended a meeting with the ZCC finance committee and we consulted them making an appeal to Bishop Mutendi for help, parents are angry and bitter because of what happened, said Gurajena.
I can confirm that the bus hired from Danamombe by the ZCC congregation was burnt to ashes at the Mutendi shrine. I do not know how it happened.
The Mirror reported sources as saying the fire started at around 9 AM and burnt tents that were pitched at the shrine before spreading to a Sprinter and the bus.
The fire reportedly engulfed the bus at around 9.25 AM when people had gone to Taberi.
The bus was hired from the school on Saturday 14 October and carried over 60 passengers and it was supposed to return on the 52.3km journey after a week.
Danhamombe High School is a Chivi Rural District Council (RDC) run school.
Danhamombe SDC chairperson Junias Gurajena said the bus did not have full coverage insurance.