One person was killed and three injured on Sunday when a grenade went off in Kigoma Sector, Nyanza District in the Southern Province.
The victims, all children aged between 4 and 12, were collecting scrap metals when a rusted grenade went off, instantly killing Olivier Niyomugisha, who was the eldest of the quartet.
According to police, three of the children were siblings.
“Among the objects they had collected was a rusted grenade which they started playing with and eventually it went off, killing Niyomugisha, 12,” said Chief Inspector of Police, Andre Hakizimana, the southern region police spokesperson.
Those injured are; Fulgence Niyigena, 10; Kevin Iradukunda, 8, and Igiraneza 4, but according to Hakizimana, the injuries sustained are minor and not life threatening.
“Explosives are now rare but they are still out there. There are cases where people find such grenades and have reported to us but the problem is with children because they can't substantiate them from the ordinary scrap,” he added.
Police has also urged those in the business to refrain from using children in collecting scrap saying that such acts also amount to child labour which is punishable by law.
“Scrap collection is dangerous requires consciousness, you can’t let children engage in such,” he added.
He reminded that there is no criminal liability to any person who voluntarily reports a suspicious object that may be a grenade or a landmine, urging those who deal in scrap metals to always report any suspicious objects.