By Rex Mphisa in Beitbridge
A soldier and a Zimbabwe Republic Police Support Unit officer on Friday night opened fire at the Beitbridge Border Post towards a cross-border transporter’s vehicle, sending the public and other border officials scurrying for cover.
Although no one was injured, the soldier, only identified as Gwaze, shot twice at the vehicle as it was passing the Customs and Excise Last Man Point near the Vehicle Inspection Office as it headed towards the exit for northbound gate.
A policeman who was at the exit gate said bullets cracked and sparked on the tarmac as Gwaze fired from an AK 47 assault rifle aiming at tyres of the trailer towed by the vehicle as the driver, now known to be Gumbo Chiweshe, proceeded to the exit gate.
“We took cover as he shot oblivious of the danger posed to people in the direction of the car he was firing at,” said the policeman.
“He must have fired seven times with the last two as he emerged from the VID gate shouting ‘stop him’ to surprised policemen manning the gate. One policeman fired two shots towards the car which had driven past.”
Gwaze and another soldier ceased firing after failing to stop the vehicle, said the policeman, and the two went back picking some objects, which must have been spent cartridges..
It has since been established the two shot at vehicle number AEJ 8714 which had gone through and been cleared by the Customs and Excise Department and authorised out, a process signed for by security guards deployed at the Malume Section of the border post.
Matabeleland South police spokesperson Chief Inspector Philisani Ndebele did not deny nor confirm the incident, but referred The Standard to his national boss Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi, who was yet to get the report.
Zimbabwe National Army spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Alphios Makotore had not responded to questions sent to him in the morning and his mobile phone went unanswered.