A pregnant mother, her husband and four of their children travelling from Marymount in Rushinga to Chinhoyi, were among the nine people k!lled early Monday morning in the head-on collision between two Honda Fit vehicles in Mazowe.
Government will assist with funeral expenses for the bereaved families.
Expecting mother Loice Kapinga and her husband Silas Gomo were travelling with their four children, including five-year-old Tanyaradzwa and eight-year-old Angela who have already been identified.
The father-in-law, Mr Edson Kapinga, said they were failing to accept that six members of their family d!ed in the accident.
Lovemore Chibanda from Murehwa also d!ed in the accident, including Tashinga Chitsike from Mt Darwin.
Chitsike’s father Mr Badwell Chitsike said he was failing to understand what kind of problem the vehicle had.
The driver of the Honda Fit, Mr Promise Makopo (22), managed to get out of the burning car, but d!ed from burns sustained on both legs.
His father, Mr Pardon Makopo, said his son was hired by four artisanal miners and one lady to move them around.
“He was born at Concession Hospital and did his primary education at Mazowe Citrus and Mazowe Mine schools. He was my favourite child and God has taken him away from me,” he said.
His childhood friend, Mr Nomore Jongwe, was in disbelief and visited the accident scene.
“They were drinking at the Nduku Shopping Centre and when the beerhall closed, they proceeded to Glendale. Promise was a pirate taxi driver plying the Mazowe Inn-Jumbo route,” he said.
Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution for Mashonaland Central, Christopher Magomo, visited the accident scene yesterday and consoled the bereaved families.
He said when nine lives are lost at once, it is a disaster.
Minister Magomo said the three burnt beyond recognition were being identified through the police forensic team.
“We have declared war against pirate taxis and police are manning the highways. Those caught on the wrong side of the law will be punished severely. Motorists must not drive when fatigued and travelling during the night is risky. Driving and drinking is a crime. Rest when fatigued and continue with the journey later.”
Officer commanding Mazowe district Chief Superintendent Enock Masimba said: “The festive season is associated with excitement and people should hire registered vehicles. We appeal to people not to drive while drunk.
“From preliminary evidence, there is a possibility of speeding. The engine flew almost 10 metres away indicating that the vehicle was not roadworthy.”
Provincial Medical Director Dr Clemence Tshuma said four of the injured, including a six-year-old girl, were rushed to Concession Hospital before three were transferred to Parirenyatwa for specialist care.
A sombre atmosphere engulfed Concession Hospital where families of the deceased gathered to identify the bodies of their loved ones.
Meanwhile, the acting director in the Department of Civil Protection Mr Farai Hokonya said the Government had offered to assist families with funeral expenses.
He called on people to use regularised public transport when travelling.
“We urge drivers to observe road rules and regulations because we cannot continue to lose innocent lives due to negligence. Be a watchdog for the other drivers and road users,” said Mr Hokonya.
Bereaved families will get coffins, transport, foodstuffs and assistance with the burial process.
Meanwhile, more than 30 vehicles operating as pirate taxis have been impounded by the Mazowe traffic department