Eight self-acclaimed prophets have drowned during a ceremony in a river in Rushinga, Mashonaland Central Province, Zimbabwe.

It was gathered that the prophets from the Vadzidzi vaJeso Apostolic sect drowned at Mazowe River while competing to retrieve a holy stick.

They fell into a trance during their annual Passover ceremony and stampeded into the river, resulting in their drowning.

The unfortunate incident happened on Saturday afternoon, October 30th. Confirming the incident, the provincial development coordinator for Mashonaland Central Province, Timothy Maregere, stated that the body of the deceased have since been retrieved.

According to Maregere, the victims consisted of 10 prophets and only two survived. Local media however reported that the prophets were competing to retrieve a “holy stick” in the deep waters of the river during a ritual to select a Baptist.

Mashonaland Central deputy police spokesperson Assistant Inspector Naison Dhliwayo, on Sunday, named the now deceased as Nickson Singano (29), Peter Marera (31), Tendai Marera (28), Alexeio Makombe (26), Tichawana Katiyo (32), Isaac Dokora (21), Lanciot Dokora (34) and Chriswell Kunyengerera.

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