Rangemore residents, police team up to tackle crime surge

By Ndumiso Tshuma

In response to a rise in crime, the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) has called on Rangemore residents on the outskirts of Bulawayo to assist them address issues like stock theft, unlawful entry, drug abuse, and robbery.

Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi, a ZRP national police spokesperson, addressed residents at a crime meeting held today at the Rangemore Business Centre.

“We’ve seen a concerning increase in stock theft,” Nyathi stated. “From January to May alone, we’ve had 14 cases, compared to 17 for the entire year in 2023. This trend is alarming and requires a united effort.”

Nyathi emphasised the importance of public vigilance. “We urge residents not to purchase meat sold illegally on the streets,” he said. “Those selling meat from their homes without permits should come forward.”

In a bid to avert armed robbery cases, Assistant Commissioner Nyathi advised residents not to keep large sums of money at home.

The meeting also highlighted the growing problem of drug abuse among youth.

“A recent arrest involved a 14-year-old boy linked to drug dealing,” Nyathi revealed. “We urge residents to report anyone selling illegal substances like mbanje, crystal meth, and others.”

Village Two Head, Israel Ncube, expressed frustration with the early release of suspects.

“We have a big challenge here with thieves in our community. You find that where we are the police are far away and the police cry a lot about not having transport to reach us. There are too many thieves in our community. When we get the thieves arrested you find that a few days later they would have been released, we don’t know what would have happened there,” said Ncube.

Ward 26 Councillor Mpumelelo Moyo also shared the same concern urging the police to thoroughly investigate all reported cases before suspects are released.

“There are a lot of criminal activities happening, maybe due to the struggles of the economic situation. We have seen that a person will get arrested today for a crime and a few days later they are released and they go back to doing criminal activities again. Those are the ones who increase the crime rate in our community,” said Moyo.

Councillor Elizabeth Ndlovu of Ward 17 and 18 of Lower Rangemore requested a police base and the deployment of more police officers.

“We have been requesting for a police station to be built in our area because the crime rate is now too high. Our area has now stretched to an area close to West Acre along Solusi Road. The nearest police station is over 10 kilometers away and if any crime happens by the time the police get here it will be already too late,” said Ndlovu.

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