According to reports, a 27-year-old man from South Africa named Ronald Rikhotso drowned during his church baptism in the Groot Letaba River located in Nwamarhanga village, Limpopo.
The incident happened on March 18, 2023, when the victim reportedly fell into the water after being baptized and drowned. On Sunday, a spokesperson for the Limpopo police, Colonel Malesela Ledwaba, confirmed the incident.
“The police in Giyani have opened a case of inquest after a baptism took a tragic turn when a 27-year-old male congregant slipped into the water and drowned soon after baptism in Groot Letaba River in Nwamarhanga village on March 18, 2023.”
“According to the information, the church congregants led by their priest, had been performing religious rituals and after they concluded the session, one of the congregants went back to the river to collect water. The 27-year-old man, identified as Ronald Rikhotso, reportedly slipped and drowned,” he said.
Colonel Ledwaba noted in a statement that the victim’s body was pulled from the river by divers from the SAPS Provincial Search and Rescue Unit after the police were informed of the occurrence.
The Provincial Commissioner of Police in Limpopo, Lieutenant-General Thembi Hadebe, issued a warning to the public after the incident on the usage of dams and waterways for any purpose, including religious activities.