Zimbabwe:In an incident that has left Gweru residents shell-shocked, a Harvest House International Church pastor committed suicide by hanging in the church hall over an alleged $15 000 debt.
Pastor Tani Tuturu (44) was found dead, hanging from Harvest House Gweru Church roof truss at around 4pm on Monday by a member who had gone to the church for prayer.
Midlands police spokesperson Inspector Joel Goko confirmed the incident saying investigations were still underway.
“I can confirm that we are investigating a sudden death case where a male adult Tani Tuturu was found dead hanging from a roof truss. His body was found at around 4pm by a church member,” he said.
“We are not yet privy to the circumstances surrounding his death hence investigations are underway.
“We would like to appeal to members of the public to engage other initiatives and interventions whenever they face personal problems instead of taking their lives,” said Insp Goko.
Tuturu’s elder brother Reverend Chemai Tuturu also confirmed the death, but professed ignorance on the circumstances surrounding his brother’s death.
“I was in Harare when my brother committed suicide. I cannot say much about the whole incident because as a family we are all shocked with my brother’s untimely death. I am yet to be furnished with full details on how he committed suicide,” said Reverend Tuturu.
A church member who spoke on condition of anonymity said Tuturu’s church was in arrears and he was failing to raise $15 000 for rentals and other services.
The source said the dire situation was worsened by pressure coming from other church members after his former congregant who later became a pastor managed to raise $100 000 after a conference while his Masvingo counterpart raised about $80 000.