4 drown in baptism ceremonies

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Two church members drowned in the Masetheko Dam during a baptism ceremony.
Two church members drowned in the Masetheko Dam during a baptism ceremony.

DROWNING incidents during baptism ceremonies are starting to become a real concern for the police.

This after four people drowned during a baptism in separate incidents in different areas in Limpopo. On Sunday, 12 June, a 36-year-old pastor and 39-year-old female congregant drowned in the Mogol River in Lephalale while performing religious rituals. The woman was rescued and taken to hospital, but she was certified dead on arrival.

The pastor’s body was retrieved on Monday, 13 June, by the search and rescue unit.

Limpopo police spokesman Colonel Mamphaswa Seabi said they opened two inquest cases and investigations are ongoing.

In another incident, two bodies were retrieved by divers from the Masetheko Dam in Mohodi Ga-Manthata Village on Sunday, 19 June. A pastor was reportedly conducting a baptism when four people fell into the dam and two of them drowned.

“The two bodies were retrieved by divers from the police search and rescue unit. Two cases of inquest have been opened,” said Seabi.

The Limpopo police commissioner, Lieutenant-General Thembi Hadebe, said drowning incidents during baptisms were concerning.

Hadebe said: “Congregants are urged to be careful and avoid rivers when performing rituals especially when they don’t know how to swim.”

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