REPUBLIC OF GOVERNMENT
MALAWI CONSULATE GENERAL IN TETE, MOZAMBIQUE
A MALAWIAN FAMILY PLUNGES INTO THE RIVER ROVUBUE FOLLOWING THE SWEEPING AWAY OF THE BRIDGE DUE TO CYCLONE ANNA
The Chuma Family of Traditional Authority Ndindi in Salima district of Malawi, on 12th March, 2022, at or around 2 a.m. plunged into the Rovubue River because the bridge was cut off as an after effect of the Cyclone Anna. The family was travelling from Malawi to South Africa through Moatize and Tete Mozambique. They were four members of the same family; a father, mother, Son and daughter in-law. Upon arriving at Ruvubue bridge, a river that mark the boundary between district of Moatize and Tete, the one-toner double cabin pick-up they were travelling in, Registration Number NE 3220, plunged in the river. Under normal circumstances, the road will have plastic barriers indicating that the road was not in use. But the time they were passing the barriers had been inadvertently removed. Worse still the driver, Joseph Chuma did not have prior knowledge of the road and bridge conditions before travelling.
The family was rescued by the community from nearby the bridge using police(marine) boat in the early hours of 13th March, after spending some hours in the river. The family was taken to the hospital by the police for medical attention. No life was lost, but the mother to Joseph was diagnosed with two fractures on the left arm.
The Consulate on its part rushed to the scene and started engaging the relevant authorities for the removal of the vehicle from the river. The response from Mozambique Government was positive. A taskforce was formed composed of the following: the Deputy Commandant of Police, Primer Squadra, the Commandant of Marine, the Commandant of Fire Department and Estrada de Zambeze. Out of these meetings Consulate was advised that the Government did not have the right equipment to retrieve the vehicle.
Upon appealing to the political leadership of the Province, a vehicle was deployed to search around the site of the accident. However, all efforts proved futile. A decision was made to come back in June when the water level would be low and so the family returned home to Malawi on a one-way travel document organized by the Consulate, as the trip could not continue without resources and valid passports.