Yvonne Ncube, Chronicle Reporter
NEARLY 28 000 people have been arrested countrywide in an operation code named Isitsheketsha kasiphele/Chikorokoza Ngachipere and No to machete gangs.
In the midlands, 142 were arrested in a two-day blitz as the police intensified a crackdown on illegal gold panners.
Since the onset of the operation in January, thousands have been detained by police for various illegal activities, including illegally dealing in foreign currency, in a move aimed at ridding the country of malcontents.
National Police Spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the arrests.
“I can confirm that we have so far arrested 27 841 illegal gold miners. In the Midlands province under operation Isitsheketsha kasiphele/Chikorokoza Ngachipere/No to machete gangs, 142 were netted in the last two days. This is an ongoing operation that is mainly targeting machete gangs,” said Asst Comm Nyathi.
This year, touts, unscrupulous fuel dealers, motorists with unregistered vehicles and those found with dangerous weapons, have also been arrested under various police operations.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the police will continue intensifying some operations which include; ‘No to unregistered motor vehicles/No to mshikashika’, ‘No to touts’, ‘No to unscrupulous fuel dealers’, ‘No to illegal forex dealers’, ‘No to dangerous weapons’, ‘No to machete gangs’ and ‘No to cross-border crimes.
Police are on record urging members of the public to maintain peace at all times.
“The ZRP encourages members of the public to adhere to all mining laws to promote safety and security in mining areas and maintain peace in the country at all times.