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Cops in trouble over stolen cattle

By Brenna Matendere

Heads are set to roll at Charandura police station in Chirumanzu following revelations that officers stationed at the camp are allegedly aiding cattle rustling syndicates in the area.

Early this month, investigations by this publication revealed that since 2016, there has been an increase in stock theft cases in areas around the police station with no single arrest having been made.

Carcasses of stolen livestock have lately been found within a one kilometre radius of the police station and about 37 cattle have been stolen in the recent past with officers failing to nail even a single suspect.

Some officers have also been selling beef to villagers, fuelling the speculation they work with cattle rustlers.

Zimbabwe Republic Police’s officer commanding Midlands, Assistant Commissioner Peter Sibanda, said they were investigating the matter.

“As police officers we are dealing with that issue where our members were accused of dipping in cattle rustling cases. “I sent my Dispol to that area and we are doing something. Very soon some officers may be reshuffled or fired,” he said.

Sibanda had earlier told a meeting for Midlands chiefs in Gweru that stock theft cases had decreased in Chirandura after he sent some police officers to the area to investigate the conduct of cops stationed in the area.

“We were having cattle stolen almost every day in Charandura,” he said.

“However, I sent some officers there after complaints against police officers at the station.

“People from that area can testify that the cases of cattle being stolen have gone down.

“We always follow up on all complaints that we receive regarding our police officers.

“What we need are people who, come with evidence to us.

“Some officers are being reshuffled while some are even being dismissed from work due to these cases.”

Sources said a police officer, who owns a butchery at Chaka growth point had been summoned over allegations that he was part of a syndicate of cattle rustlers.

“He has been summoned and may soon face disciplinary action.”

A Veterinary Department official in the area has also been accused by villagers of working with the syndicates to clear stolen cattle using forged documents.

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