POLICE have warned Zimbabweans to be on high alert following an upsurge in robberies involving unregistered vehicles whose owners target desperate commuters.Report by Feluna Nleya, Staff Reporter
Suspected vehicle makes being used include the Toyota range of Ipsum, Gaia, Raum and Vitz.
Harare provincial spokesperson Inspector Tedius Chibanda said: “There is growing concern over plain robberies involving private vehicles, those that ferry people while they are not licensed to do so.”
Chibanda said the vehicles’ hunting grounds included the Harare Show Grounds, Julius Nyerere Way and Sam Nujoma (formerly Second Street Extension).
“They usually go to places like the Show Grounds, Julius Nyerere and along Sam Nujoma acting as if they would be providing transport. They then rob people after they travel for a distance and dump them along the way,” Chibanda said.
He added that kombis were also being used in the robberies.
“We continue to appeal to the public to go and board lifts at designated points because this is giving us problems as people are picked up at undesignated places by some of these vehicles,” he said. Chibanda said some of the vehicles are unmarked, making it difficult for them to trace.
Police also said rape cases involving juveniles were on the rise.
“Rape cases of juvenile girls are on the rise and we discovered that most of these cases involve relatives.
“Harare South district conducted an operation code-named Regai Dzive Shiri (Let them mature first). We are saying ‘why don’t you wait for them to be adults’,” he said.
“We were also alerting the parents who leave their daughters in the custody of males to be wary of such crimes.
“We also had another awareness campaign in Chitungwiza from October 24 to October 26 code-named Chibharo Paukama Taramba (No to inter-relation sexual abuse). Chitungwiza had the highest cases of juveniles raped by relatives”.
Unmarked vehicles used in most cases
SUSPECTED vehicle makes being used include the Toyota range of Ipsum, Gaia, Raum and Vitz.
Inspector Tadius Chibanda said some of the vehicles are unmarked, making it difficult for them to trace and added that kombis were also being used in the robberies.