Chinhoyi (Telegraph-New Ziana) – Police in Makonde district recently arrested a gang of machete wielding men alleged to have been terrorizing villagers in the area.
Armed with machetes and a spear, Takesure Mashonga, Gasura (age not known), Preacherd Banda (19 ) of Nyamupinga Farm Mataruse, George Ncube (27) of Diresia Farm, Kadoma and another suspect who is unknown, are alleged to have stormed Magadzire Shop at Jochoma village in Runene on January 16 and attacked customers.
Shop patrons Andrew Phiri (37), Zivania Tom (19), Tapfumanei Chambati (35) all from Havana village, Vincent Mashonganyika (41) and Berita Jeremisi (41) both from Jochoma village, sustained serious injuries after the attack.
They were attacked all over their bodies, including heads, arms and legs.
During the attack, shop owner, Mashonganyika closed it and barricaded himself inside, but the gang allegedly forcibly gained entry and looted groceries.
Mashonganyika escaped attack by running out through the shop’s back door.
The next day, the machete gang returned to the village and ransacked and burnt some homes, including that of headman Kezias Jochoma.
Among stolen items was $1200 cash, and an assortment of household goods such as blankets and kitchen utensils were destroyed when houses were burnt.
The gang later proceeded to Sanyati area where it tried to continue with its rein of terror, but was nabbed by police with the assistance of the local community.
Police spokesman for Mashonaland West, Assistant Inspector Ian Kohwera said law enforcement agencies had intensified their campaign against machete gangs in the province, who have caused havoc.
“We have intensified our operations in Mashonaland West.”
Using the machetes and other similar weapons, the gangs move around looting minerals from small scale mines, and goods from households and shops.
Scores of people, including police officers, have died across the country in the gangs’ attacks, which are often brutal.