Presidential spokesperson George Charamba says that President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration has given police the greenlight to shoot and kill suspected armed robbers who have been causing havoc in the past few weeks, threatening to make the country ungovernable.
“Guys, stop these armed robberies, you will die. I have warned you, the government will not hesitate. You are a dead man walking, trust me,” Charamba tweeted.
Charamba’s comments came after two more suspects involved in a shootout with law enforcement agents last week succumbed to the injuries, bringing the number of armed robbers shot dead during the weekend gunfire exchange to three.
Forensic investigations revealed that one of the armed robbers who died yesterday was identified as Richard Mutanga.
Home Affairs minister Kazembe Kazembe said the armed robbers were being accounted for adding that “seven notorious ones were accounted for on Sunday.
“Police will descend on them heavily and the long arm of the law will catch up with them.”
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the police were not going back and that they have set up crack teams all over the country tracking the armed robbers, “so to those who will try to hide, they will certainly be found and arrested.”
He added: “The public must rest in the comfort that the police currently are on top of the situation and we are tracking all known armed robbers as evidenced by what happened last weekend.
“So far, from those we arrested, three people have died. Yesterday, we were talking of one robber who died, now there are three. One of them died this (yesterday) morning.”
The three of the armed robbers identified as Valentine Mutasa, Godfrey Josi and his wife Juliet Gavaza later appeared before the courts on Monday and one of them was remanded in custody on his hospital bed. They were remanded to July 14 pending trial including Peter Mushipe.
Meanwhile, the court heard that the gang was involved in several armed robberies around Harare and that Josi is facing more than eight counts of robbery, while his accomplices have various counts of the same crime.
The state alleges that Josi and his accomplices went to the University of Zimbabwe compound on June 15 and stormed one of the directors, Weng Dong’s house where they stole US$22 000 after exchanging gunfire with him.
It is also alleged that the accused robbed Seedex Company on March 20 and went away with US$20 000.
In March this year, during another robbery at Gateway School, the gang went away with US$250 000 after blowing the cash vaults at the school.