By Tatenda Gapare
A man from Emakhandeni in Bulawayo is lucky to be alive after he was on Friday allegedly shot by Bulawayo City Council municipal police, who were on a stray dog shooting exercise in the suburb, leaving him with three bullets logged in both legs.
The man, Mr Jonathan Mangando was yesterday admitted to Mpilo Central Hospital where he is supposed to undergo an operation to remove the bullets.
Speaking from his hospital bed, the visibly pained 20-year-old said he was shot when he went outside at around 7pm to investigate after hearing gunshots in the suburb.
“I heard gunshots coming from the clinic side then all of a sudden I heard my neighbour’s dog being shot. I was confused so I decided to go and see what was happening. The moment I opened the gate, our dog came out and I heard gunshots being fired at my dog and at me. I felt numb and that is when I realised that I have been shot on both legs. Blood started gushing out of my legs and I collapsed,” recounted Mr Mangando, tears streaming down his cheeks.
“When I looked up I saw four men in municipal police uniforms collecting my dog and they just left me there. I am not sure if they saw me because I was in pain and my vision was blurred. I am angered by the fact that they shot my dog which is not even a stray dog, it came out because I was by the gate. I am in too much pain, I can’t even move my legs because the bullets have not been removed.”
Jonathan’s sister, Ms Evelyn Mangando said the family was appealing for money to help her brother.
“We are appealing for help. We don’t have enough money to help pay medical bills. We need to pay the ambulance we used from Emakhandeni. Right now our mother does not know what happened to her son because we are afraid that something bad might happen to her if we tell her, recently she had a stroke so we do not want her to suffer more.
“BCC must do something about this reckless incident, it is because of them that Jonathan was shot. If only they were careful something like this would not have happened to him. It seems like they were targeting our suburb because they shot many dogs even if the dog was inside the yard. They should do something and help us with medical bills,” she said.
One of the witnesses said he saw the four officers driving off after the shooting incident.
“I saw the men running away in their car, which was clearly marked BCC. I tried to stop the car but they didn’t even bother. What they did was bad, how can they prefer to collect a dog and leave a human being dying, whom they had shot?” claimed the witness only identified as Mr Sibanda.
The Sunday News crew saw one of the dogs which was allegedly shot by the council police. The dog was shot and left lying along a major road in the surburb. Those who wish to help Mr Mangando can contact his sister on 0717487500 or visit the family at 1345 Emakhandeni B suburb.
Contacted for comment, Bulawayo police spokesperson Inspector Precious Simango said she cannot comment on the issue involving BCC officers.
“As you said, the issue involves BCC so you have to contact the BCC public relations officer, they will be able to help you,” she said. Efforts to get a comment from the council senior public relations officer, Mrs Nesisa Mpofu, were fruitless yesterday. Sunday News