Driver Accused of Kidnapping ECD Learners Passes Away After Stroke

April 26, 2024
Samuel Honde | Report Focus News
Driver accused of kidnapping 25 ECD learners in Harare, has died.

The driver, accused of kidnapping 25 early childhood development (ECD) learners from David Livingstone Primary School in Harare on January 20, has passed away. Samuel Honde, who was out on bail, succumbed to a stroke he suffered several weeks ago, according to reports.

Honde, allegedly experiencing a mental lapse, directed the minibus to Macheke, Mashonaland East, instead of its intended destination in Kuwadzana, Harare. Harare magistrate Letwin Rwodzi had ordered a mental examination of Honde following his arrest in January, directing the state to proceed according to Section 26 of the Mental Health Act.

The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) stated that Honde had been contracted by various parents since 2016 to transport learners to and from David Livingstone Primary School to their homes in greater Harare. He was reportedly residing at a Seventh-Day Adventist church in Kuwadzana, Harare.

On the day of the alleged kidnapping, Samuel Honde picked up the 25 learners—14 girls and 11 boys—from the school and embarked on the journey. However, instead of heading towards their homes in Kuwadzana and surrounding areas, he drove towards Macheke.

Concerned motorists spotted the minors crying inside a stationary Nissan Caravan on a busy highway and reported the incident to the police. The vehicle had come to a halt after running out of fuel. Subsequently, the driver was arrested for kidnapping and taken to Macheke Police Station.

The children were later reunited with their parents after being referred to Marondera Provincial Hospital for medical examination. Honde, meanwhile, suffered a stroke while still in custody and was undergoing various medical tests.

Unfortunately, his health did not improve, and he passed away this morning at Harare Hospital.