UPDATED: Police probe city violence

Shops in the CBD were forced to close early following running battles between the vendors and the alleged criminals-Picture credit:Social Media

Shops in the CBD were forced to close early following running battles between the vendors and the alleged criminals-Picture credit:Social Media

Crime Reporter
Police in Harare are investigating an incident in which street vendors and cellphone dealers on Tuesday evening clashed with alleged criminals, who were in the habit of terrorising them and stealing their wares.

The incident occurred along Angwa Street around the former Ximex Mall. Two suspected criminals were later arrested and police are still looking for their accomplices.

Shops in the CBD were forced to close early due running battles between the vendors and the alleged criminals, who were pelting each other with stones.

Police yesterday heavily deployed in the city to thwart further disturbances. Trucks carrying policemen could be seen patrolling around the area. On Tuesday night, national police spokesperson Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi confirmed the incident.

“It is believed that there are some criminals who target vendors at Ximex Mall, taking their wares and today (Tuesday) they went to the area where they clashed with the vendors,” he said.

He said the vendors refused to surrender their wares, resulting in clashes. He said investigations suggested some of the alleged criminals were coming from the direction of Harvest House, the MDC-T headquarters.

“Investigations to ascertain the motive behind this (attack) are still in progress,” Chief Supt Nyathi said.

Roads near the area were temporarily closed as stones were strewn everywhere. The glazing at Harvest House was damaged during the clashes. OK First Street and shops nearby were temporarily closed for fear property damage and looting.

The Police Reaction Group (PRG) was later deployed to restore law and order.

There were also messages circulating on social media claiming Zanu-PF Harare Province youth chairman Cde Goodwin Gomwe was behind the disturbances.

Cde Gomwe dismissed the allegations as false and malicious and meant to tarnish his image and that of the ruling party.

“I would like to categorically state that I was not either involved or associated with the MDC-T headquarters violent disturbances, whether directly or indirectly. Furthermore, I had no knowledge of the disturbances. I got the shock of my life when I came across a message on social media suggesting that I was gun totting and leading in the violent acts,” he said in a statement.

“Such messages are being fuelled by malice and mischief. Let me warn those behind the falsehoods that it is illegal and unacceptable to falsely accuse someone.”

He said investigations he carried out revealed that the clashes were between MDC-T youths and cellphone dealers that trade at the former Ximex Mall.

“It is said that the MDC-T youths had looted phones from the dealers a couple of days ago. It’s further stated that the rowdy MDC youths usually raid the dealers of their wares and use Harvest House as their hideout. When they returned today (Tuesday) to carry out their illegal activities as their culture had been, Ximex dealers are said to have resisted them and retaliated, resulting in the violence,” Cde Gomwe said.

He called on the law enforcement agents to thoroughly investigate and bring to book those that thrive on violence.

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  • Rachel Gross-weiner

    These criminal gangs are well known to police.

  • dusty

    Restraint from both police and Herald. Imagine that.

  • Politicks

    Isn’t the harvest house direction ,same as ZANU PF head quarters direction, when at Ximex?

    • Ras Matopos

      This is a political question.

  • yowe

    Pane kakunyepa kaitwa apa…we all know who demands payment everyday from vendors..It is not the City Council FYI

    • truthsaid

      Yowe

      Tell us who it is. This is the internet …your identity is safe brother

      • Madara

        no ones identity is safe from me. but yeah no one cares, please tell us.

        • ruth

          Haihwa, wo…Get over yourself.

      • yowe

        YOWE!!!!! hahahaha i thought you knew that some youths go around collecting money manheru as payment for the right to vend at certain places

  • Mai vasingade mwana asinganzwe

    Kana vamwe vacho vakasungwa. Matononoka kuthonga 10 years mu jeri. 1. They disturbed the nation. 2. Munhu wegawega aka kanganisirwa. Pamunhu wegawega anemhuri yaanoriritira newuwandu wavo. 3. Kuzviyita vanogona kukanganisa runyararo munyika. 4. Kusina Mai akungoyendewe. Tkubvunziwe kune akatutuma. Andisi vendor asi vanhu varikuriritira mhuri dzavo Vamutongi musapedzerwe nguva yekutarisa zvimwe. Vayita gore richitanga. Tuchagara mujeri tuchifunga kuti 2018 andikanganwe.

  • Nyadzeni

    The area as around Harvest House has been taken over by thugs. I was harassed one day when I parked opposite Harvest House at FBC Bank. The thugs demanded money from me after I had paid my parking fee. I had to part with $5 when they threatened to deflate my tyres. There is need to stop the anarchy around that area.

  • Zimborig

    Mr Hwende was quick to say it was
    Gomwe on Twitter knowing that the MDC T youths rob vendors of their cellphones and hide at Harvest House. We now know, I am reclaiming my vote and will give it to some other party in a few months time.

    • Madara

      what makes you think they are part of the party? are they employed by the party?

      • dungas

        Hamunyari kutaura nhema Why not tel us the trueth.!

        • Madara

          what?

  • Dr Pangloss

    Because they will not be able to answer if you ask them whose gun was it! Obviously no way Ximex boys could have gotten their hands on a gun. Worse still, the gun part should then have been the focus of police investigations bcz it more life threatening even to passerbys’. Neither the police nor the Herald are willing or comfortale to talk about it because they know its the pandora box & the only key to know the truths.

  • Dr Pangloss

    Where is the ‘gun’ part of the story. Shots were fired I hear. Obviously thereis no way Ximex boys could have gotten their hands on a gun. Worse still, the gun part should then have been the focus of police investigations bcz it is more life threatening even to passerbys’. Neither the police nor the Herald are willing to talk about it because they know its the pandora box & the only key to know the truth of what really transpired