Over 1 000 illegal miners arrested in Midlands

By Tafara Chikumira
More than one thousand illegal miners have been arrested under a Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) operation which began this Monday in the Midlands province. Operation Chikorokoza Ngachipere, Isitsheketsha Kasiphele, No to Machete-Wielding Gangs, is being carried out in the by the ZRP Midlands province. Police Spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the development.

Of the 1 250 illegal miners, 821 were arrested in Shurugwi, 240 in Kwekwe while 176 were arrested in Mberengwa with 13 from Gokwe.
291 of those arrested in Shurugwi have since appeared in court while 91 have paid admission of guilt fines as police continue with their screening exercise.
ZRP Officer Commanding Support Unit, Assistant Commissioner Bazizi Dube told ZBC news that they are on a mission to restore order in the mining sector.
“We have some minor crimes obtaining in these areas which primarily contributes to the chaos which we see in these areas. We want to restore law and order in our mining areas. We have also invited the Ministry of Mines and EMA to regularise activities in these areas. With our resolve, we believe that we are going to win this war, despite the raids we are also engaging them and educating them to do proper mining,” he said.
Meanwhile, some machete gangs are said to have pounced in Mvuma at Chiodza township where they allegedly broke into shops and left some business people injured in the process.
An eyewitness told ZBC news that the gang proceeded to Chiodza Secondary school where they terrorised some teachers as they searched for valuables using the same modus operandi. The case has since been reported at Mvuma police station and investigations are underway.