Thirteen PCEA Thika Women's Guild died in an accident at Chelinze in Tanzania yesterday. The group of 84 women from PCEA Happy Valley were destined to go for the retreat in Uganda but changed the plans following the Ebola outbreak in the country, Rev Stephen Wainaina said yesterday. Rev Wainaina was speaking during a prayer meeting for the died and injured.
During the emotional mass service, some faithful wept uncontrollably while others, overcome with emotions, fainted. Kenya Red Cross Society volunteers administered first aid to those who had fainted. Wainaina said the accident was "a big blow and a disaster to the church". He consoled the faithful saying whatever happened was in God's plan. "We are yet to establish those who perished," said Rev Wainaina.
Presbytery Guild coordinator Eunice Njeri said the accident was a blow to the church. Presbytery clerk and Rev Patrick Muthumu said he was shocked by the sad news. President Kibaki yesterday ordered the military to help in the evacuation of the Kenyans. Tanzanian police said the accident occurred involved two buses and two lorries.
According to initial reports, one of the buses had burst a tyre and overturned, landing in a ditch. The second bus passed them and made a U-turn some 500 metres away. At the scene, a lorry heading in the same direction rammed into the bus.
Reports indicate that the lorry lost control and hit the stationary bus and veered off, colliding head on with another lorry moving in the opposite direction. Yesterday evening, a Kenya military helicopters brought some of the injured to Nairobi. They are admitted at various city hospitals.