7 returnees escape from centres Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi

Crime Reporter

SEVEN more returnees, including four women from Malawi, escaped from quarantine and isolation centres in Masvingo and Harare, bringing the total of those who have escaped so far from compulsory quarantine for returning residents to 297 with police now stepping up efforts to stop the trend.

So far, police have only managed to arrest 30 people who had escaped from the designated quarantine centres countrywide.

On Sunday, seven escaped from quarantine centres countrywide.

The four woman escaped from Mushagashe Training Centre in Masvingo, while the other three escaped from Churchill School in Harare.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi yesterday said police were concerned about the increase in the numbers of escapees.

“Police are now investigating the manner in which these people escaped from these centres,” he said.

“We still believe that they are taking advantage of the time they are given to refresh to escape while others are escaping during meal times. We urge the public to report such people to the police so that they will be arrested.”

Recently police said most of these people were taking advantage of the porous security fences and walls at some of these institutions and other surroundings that don’t have lights to escape.

Asst-Comm Nyathi said some of the centres were still upgrading security systems and some of the suspects were taking advantage to escape.

Meanwhile, 125 694 people have been arrested countrywide since March 30 for violating lockdown regulations, with almost all paying admission of guilt fines, although more serious offenders go to court.

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