CHINHOYI — Reported cases of stock theft are on a downward trend in Mashonaland West province, a development attributed to concerted efforts by the police and various stakeholders to curb the crime.
According to official statistics from the police, between January and May 2011, the province recorded 409 stolen cattle while 357 beasts were stolen this year over the same period.
Of the 409 stolen cattle last year, 173 were recovered while 95 of the 357 stolen this year were recovered.
Police provincial spokesperson, Inspector Clemence Mabgweazara confirmed the decline in stock theft cases, saying the high recovery rate of stolen cattle was as a result of collaborated efforts to curb the vice by police, abattoir and butchery operators and the public.
“In the province, Kadoma district tops the list of stock theft prevalence with 170 cases reported last year while 126 stolen cattle have been reported from January to May 2012.
“However, with co-operation between various groups and individuals, police were able to make significant recoveries as we strive to curb stock theft,” said Mabgweazara while addressing stakeholders during a Business Against Stocktheft (BAST) meeting held in Chinhoyi on Tuesday.
BAST chairperson James Masango urged councils to play an active role in fighting cattle rustling and advised communities not to let their animals stray as there would be easily targeted by thieves.