Nqobile Tshili/Michelle Gwizi, Chronicle Reporters
TWO knife-wielding men allegedly attacked two men in Bulawayo’s Central Business District and got away with $500 from one of their victims in separate incidents, police confirmed yesterday.
Both incidents occurred between 1AM and 1:20AM on Wednesday.
Bulawayo acting police spokesperson Inspector Abednico Ncube confirmed the two robbery incidents.
“We are investigating two robbery cases that occurred in the city’s CBD on Wednesday night. The first case occurred near a hotel situated along Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo Street between 11th and 12th Avenue. The victim claimed that he drove to the hotel at about 1AM and soon after parking his car two unknown men approached him from nowhere and demanded cash from him. He said the two assailants produced a knife and placed it on his neck and threatened to slit his throat if he did not comply with their orders. Their victim handed them $500 before they vanished,” he said.
Insp Ncube said the second incident occurred along Lobengula Street between 13th and 14th Avenue, about 20 minutes after the first incident.
He said the proximity of the two incidents had led the police to suspect that the crimes were committed by the same crew.
Insp Ncube said police officers who were on patrol arrested one of the suspects.
“The second victim is an employee of one of the fast food outlets who was walking home. When he reached the mentioned street, he met two male adults who manhandled him. They assaulted him with a plank while confiscating his property. Alert officers who were conducting night patrols observed the crime being committed and reacted to it leading to the suspects escaping. However, they managed to give chase and arrested one of the suspects who is assisting police with investigations,” he said.
Insp Ncube said members of the public must not expose themselves to criminals.
“We strongly discourage members of the public from walking home in the middle of the night as this increases risks of being attacked. You rather lose money through hiring taxis instead of exposing yourself to robbers who can put your life in danger. As police we conduct patrols but our officers can’t be at every corner of the city,” he said.
Meanwhile, one of two suspected armed robbers who was allegedly part of a gang of up to 10 men that has been causing mayhem countrywide, appeared in court in Bulawayo yesterday facing robbery charges.
Christopher Danda and Edward Chigwida were arrested on Monday in the city following a spate of armed robberies in Tshabalala and Nkulumane suburbs.
Chigwida, who is also wanted for armed robberies in Harare and Gweru, did not appear in court.
He is admitted to the United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) after he was bitten by police dogs while allegedly resisting arrest.
Danda appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Mr Franklin Mkhwananzi facing robbery and attempted murder charges.
He was remanded in custody to May 16.
The magistrate advised him to apply for bail at the High Court and told him it was his right to seek a lawyer.
Allegations are that on March 23 this year at Nyamandlovu, Danda, Chigwida, Patrick Mpala, Fortune Sibanda, Tendai Dzoma, Mushipe, Makhosana Masango and Wonder Mawone, who are still at large, raided Mr Antony Walters’ farm house armed with two pistols.
Prosecuting, Mr Nkathazo Dlodlo said: “They struck three complainants Mr Walters, Mr Sean Walters and Ms Roxanne Walters with sticks before tying them up with curtain straps. They fired two shots threatening to kill them before demanding cash and valuables.
“Danda forced Ms Walters at gun point to open a safe where they took R170 000, RTGS $10 000, US$12 000, jewellery worth $10 000, five iPhones, a pellet gun and a rifle. They stole a Toyota Hilux vehicle from the farmhouse which they to used as a getaway car.”
He said they dumped the stolen vehicle 16 kilometres from the farm.
“On March 18 this year at Pumula South, Danda with five accomplices armed with pistols, approached the complainant who had parked his car outside the gate to his home. Danda produced a pistol intending to rob the complainant,” said Mr Dlodlo.
He said the complainant noticed the gang approaching and sped off.
Danda and his accomplices shot at the vehicle leaving it with two bullet holes.—@nqotshili/@gwizi_n