Two siblings aged three and five years drowned in Filabusi on Thursday after attempting to swim in Zamba Dam. Junior Nkala (5) and Sithandweyinkosi (3) were the only children in their family.
Their cousin, Patience Nkala (3), who was with them when they drowned, survived.
Villagers found patience wandering near a clinic about three kilometres from the dam.
The tragedy occurred at Zamba village in Mahole area on Thursday afternoon. Villagers retrieved the bodies at night on the same day.
Ms Melody Dube, Patience’s mum said:”It is by luck that Patience survived but she cannot tell us much regarding the incident given her age. There is a very deep and dangerous well in our home garden but they never went there.
“It’s sad that they went to play at the dam and drowned.”
Ms Dube said the family had gone to attend a family meeting and had left the children under the custody of a neighbour.
Family Spokesperson Mr Owen Dube, who is grandfather to the deceased children, said his family was in shock.
“We are in deep sorrow. I just can’t explain the heartbreak and pain that I am going through. These children were the light of our home and we were looking forward to Junior starting Grade Zero soon,” said Mr Dube.
The children were staying with their grandparents as their parents work in Bulawayo.
The children’s father, Mr Sydney Nkala, arrived at the funeral wake yesterday accompanied by other family members.
Mr Dube said the children’s bodies were n@ked which meant they removed the clothes and went in to swim.
“It is astonishing that three-year-olds would think of removing their clothes, fold them neatly and then leave them behind to play in water.
“I just cannot understand it because normally you would expect kids to toss clothes all over,” said Mr Dube before breaking down.
The dam is said to have become a death trap as some people drowned in the same dam recently.
Matabeleland South Police spokesperson Inspector Philisani Ndebele confirmed the incident