Tear gas reportedly killed a one-year-old girl in Bulawayo after it was fired into a house during the Zim protests over the weekend.
Kupakwashe Mutasa who was only one year old inhaled the tear gas after a canister which was aimed at quelling anti-Mugabe protesters got into their apartment.
Kupakwashe was sleeping when the police began firing canisters of tear gas into the flats. Kupakwashe’s father, David Mutasa said he knew something was amiss when his daughter could no longer breathe properly.
He tried to contact the police for help but they would not grant him help. Mutasa resorted to seeking medical help instead. This could only happen after the riot police had left their area. Yet, Kupakwashe still lost her life.
“… I only managed to try to seek medical attention after they left but it was too late as my child died on our way to the hospital,” Mutasa said.
Other reports also agree that Kupakwashe died as a result of suffocation on tear gas.
“She suffocated from teargas whilst inside the house and then the mother tried to take her out she was met with the smoke again,” a citizen reporter whose spoke on condition of anonymity told Zim Metro today.
“I am at Burombo flats now and just spoke to three women who confirmed the death of a 1 year 6 months old child,” the citizen reporter said.
“The women said the kid died of suffocation from tear gas, and another man also died after being rushed to the hospital.”
The anti-Mugabe protests were as a result of a #ZimShutDown hashtag which gained momentum on social media. It was a call by activists who suggested a stay-away as a silent protest against the current Zimbabwean government.
The protests led to many schools, businesses, and even government departments being closed.
Poor economy, unemployment, the inability of the government to pay its workers, among others were some of the reasons the stay-away was planned.