Nqobile Tshili Chronicle Correspondent—
EIGHT armed robbers travelling in two vehicles pounced on TM Pick N Pay in Cowdray Park yesterday, tied a security guard to a tree and looted groceries worth about $700 after failing to find any cash. The incident occurred between 1AM and 2AM. The supermarket’s management said yesterday that they do not keep cash in the shop.
A Chronicle newscrew visited Cowdray Park at around 11AM yesterday and found homicide detectives conducting preliminary investigations. Shepherd Msipha, the shop’s manager, said their security guard was lucky to escape unharmed after he was tied to a tree about 50 metres from the shop.
He said the suspects might have targeted the shop hoping to get money but did not find any. “Our security guard said a group of eight men travelling in two cars pounced on the shop between 1AM and 2AM carrying two 9mm guns. They tied the guard to a tree near the shop before breaking the door to gain entry,” said Msipha.
He said when they opened for business yesterday morning, the shop’s door was open and some foodstuffs were missing. “They stole some groceries. I can’t quantify the exact value of the groceries that were taken but I suspect it could be below or just above $700,” said Msipha.
He urged the police to deploy more members in Cowdray Park, saying the area was now synonymous with crime. “These criminals were not even covering their faces. Our security guard said he can identify them if he sees them. We call on the police to increase their deployment in Cowdray Park. This is becoming a hot spot for criminals,” he said.
He refused to comment further after being pressed on why the shop had no Closed Circuit Television (CCTV). “I’m not even allowed to talk to the Press. For that information you need to get in touch with our headquarters in Harare,” he said.
The security guard was not at the shop after having been earlier freed by local residents. A comment could not be obtained from Bulawayo’s police spokesperson Inspector Precious Simango as her cellphone was unreachable.