The Zimbabwean government has announced that it will help meet funeral expenses for 18 people who died in a road accident along the Harare-Nyamapanda highway on Sunday.

Police had initially said that 17 people had died, but the toll has since risen to 18 in the country’s most horrific accident during the festive season.

The accident occurred near Mutoko Business Center, about 130 km from Harare, when an Isuzu KB double cab truck belonging to the Rutsito family and travelling in the direction to Harare collided head-on with a BMW in which the Chitimbe family were travelling.

Eight members of the Rutsito family, seven from the Chitimbe family and three others who are still to be identified died in the accident.

The director in the Department of Civil Protection Nathan Nkomo said the government would assist in the burials, the state-run Herald newspaper reported Tuesday.

“For those with funeral policies, government will assist with 2,500 Zimbabwe dollars (30 U.S. dollars) per head and for those without funeral policies, the government will avail coffins and transport.

“To those who are currently hospitalized, government will assist by meeting all the medical bills,” he said.

At least 36 people have died on Zimbabwe’s roads since Christmas Day. Enditem

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