'Protect children at public events'

HARARE - Social workers have urged national event organisers and police to protect children during State events following the death of two minors and their mother in an accident in Warren Park after Independence celebrations.

Simbisai Mumango, 26, and her children Rumbidzai, 6 and Nyasha, 18, months, were fatally struck near the National Sports Stadium, after joining thousands of people in commemorating Zimbabwe’s independence.

Simbisai and Rumbidzai died on the spot, while Nyasha died a few hours after admission to Parirenyatwa Hospital.

Police said they arrested Adel Maremera, the driver of the Mazda B2200 truck which killed Simbisai and her children.

Maremera is alleged to have failed to give way at the pedestrian crossing at the entrance of the stadium before hitting the three.

However, Trust Zadzi the publicity officer for National Association of Social Workers in Zimbabwe said: “The death of two innocent children and their mother on April 18, 2013 is a clarion call to all progressive citizens of Zimbabwe to start prioritising the protection of children during State events and other large gatherings.”

Zadzi implored the police to look after the welfare of children at such events.

“As a progressive group of social workers in Zimbabwe we implore the police and all those responsible for managing events to start looking into the welfare of children.

“This statement has not been prompted by a desire to name and shame but by a perpetuating culture of being reckless and not protecting children from risk and harm.

“In 2011 a child was abducted at the Harare agricultural show and his remains were later found within the vicinity of the Show grounds and this year again the police have been caught napping —resulting in the death of two children.”

Zadzi said such tragedies at national programmes will result in most parents denying their children the privilege to attend important and historic national events fearing the worst could happen to them. - Margaret Chinowaita, Community Affairs Editor

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