Minister defends police brutality on vendors

Home Affairs deputy minister Mike Madiro yesterday said government was unapologetic about the manner in which law enforcement agents were dealing with vendors and commuter omnibus drivers resisting the order to move out of the Harare central business district (CBD), which has resulted in daily running battles.

BY KUDZAI MUCHENJEKWA/BLESSED MHLANGA

He was responding to a question in the Senate by Mashonaland East senator Jane Chifamba, who asked him to explain government policy on dealing with vendors and commuter omnibus drivers operating in the CBD.

“The situation has caused problems for so many people and it has created chaos in the CBD to the extent that I was also a victim of that chaos. Are you not, as a ministry, fixing a problem using methods that cause more problems?” Chifamba asked.

Madiro defended the police, saying they we doing their job, adding that vendors should not take the law into their hands, but must abide by the law to avoid clashes with the police.

“It is common cause that police are there to promote peace and stability in the nation. There are authorised places at which people who want to sell their goods can sell their goods without being chased away,” he said.

“The Constitution gives authority to the police to take such action. Police are not going to stop, but we are urging people to go to places that are designated and sell their goods. Vendors should follow the law and not take the law into their hands.”

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Some residents say police were going overboard, smashing vehicles they suspect of illegally ferrying commuters without regard to innocent bystanders.

Cosmore Mashayamombe had windows and windscreen of his Toyota Fun Cargo smashed by baton-wielding police officers along Fifth Street and George Silundika Avenue as he drove a relative to a preschool graduation ceremony.

“They blocked me in the front and jumped on my vehicle, smashing glasses and injuring my cousin in the process. I tried to plead with them to stop, but they could have none of it. I know that anyone who commits a crime should be arrested and their crime heard in court, but this wanton cruelty and illegal destruction of property shocked me,” he said.

Mashayamombe said the particular officers were moving around in a Harare City Council vehicle with registration number AAE7846. He reported the matter to the police and a docket was opened under case RB100295.

Attempts to get comment from police were futile, with spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba saying she was locked up in a meeting.

24 Comments

  1. no sane person would apologise for the actions by the law enforcement agents as they try to arrest lawlessness taking place in cbd ,good answers deputy minister

    1. Mr Editor, please. I wonder why you allow words of hatred to be kept published by this great paper, informative Newsday. I have followed Eliasha’s comments for quite some time now. His words are not constructive but retrogressive and exhibit hatred and punitive of the highest order. Yes, am 100% supportive of the use of correct designated areas for vendors, but really Eliasha should be building rather than destroying. Remember this paper is widely read and appeals to people of all walks of life, so, I believe our contributions should be well phrased to create a reconciliatory culture other than pursuing this hatred. I stand to be corrected. Thank you.

      1. will correct you Sir you are wrong the words are just what the doctor ordered not sure what you find out of line as am just restating facts as there are

  2. The police are doing a great job. It’s normal that some innocent people might be caught up here and there. There is now a whiff of fresh air in the cities. Well done police.

  3. DR StopiT (PhD-Fake)

    Thank God our Police are now back at work. These vendors are an eye-soar in our nation. Please drive them away, or at least go and till the land in our highly arable rural land.

  4. If people (vendors and commuter omnibus drivers in particular) want to behave like wild animals, then they surely will be treated as such. If they want war the with authorities, so be it. We have had enough of this lawlessness in this country. You want to be heard in court uchizviitisa zvako, not this time.

  5. The cleaning up of Harare CBD is a delicate and sensetive issue that needs a holistic approach, one is but reminded of the colonial days when the CBD was a no go area for natives and black police scouts were employed to deal with any native who broke the rule. Mkie Madiro’s comments in parliament are rather misplaced illogical and would not do good on improving the image of our Police services which is badly battered over the years. If he is seeking relevance seen that his post – deputy minister – is just jobs for the boys not relevant at all in this comatose economy he better be advised to be on the side of the people.

  6. operation restore legacy…our city is shining slowly …keep on doing your good job Police

  7. The problem goes much deeper, these folk don’t want to be vendors they want proper jobs but bad govt policies have destroyed the economy leaving them bitter and frustrated. Police brutality is unacceptable under any circumstances.

    1. illegality is equally unacceptable under any circumstances.

    2. So will you accept that those without jobs also be allowed to come and rob your house since they are unemployed. Can we also allow them to come and squatter in your yard because they are homeless. Joblessness cannot be used as an excuse to commit crimes

  8. Some people clearly miss the point that the police are beating up people at random and smashing windows of private vehicles which have nothing to do with vendors, commuters or forex changers. Supporting such lawlessness by the police means you have a brain that does not work. The same people are probably happy that 7 innocent citizens were shot dead on Aug 1st: I can only conclude that such are evil, satanic, murderous and ignorant. They deserve to be at the receiving end of this cruel “justice” they are applauding.

  9. The Way Forward Zimbabwe

    there is no question that the vendors must not be handled with kid gloves. they must be removed without much further ado. they are vending illegally causing chaos in the CBD, encroaching on other citizens’ properties, running their values down, littering everywhere, and fawling everywhere.Properties owned by pension funds in the CBD, for instance, have been vacated by tenants and not returning to the pension funds. In consequence pensioners are not getting as much from their pension funds. No retailers, no serious business person will open up shop in the chaos that had been created by vendors, in consequence employment will remain subdued. vendors and kombis must go, by any means that must make them go

  10. we can not turn our nation into a vending state kumaruzevha nemarestlements kwakazara vakwegura kana usina zvekuita mutown enda unorima after all vendors have bad business practises unotengeserwa 4ne inoshanda for 1 week enda pa bahadour center in Gweru uone .kwasara machinesE LETS CHASE THEM AWAY LIKE WHAT DONALD TRUMP IS DOING.WELL DONE POLICE TAUNDI RACHENA.WE CAN NOT TOLLERATE DUBIOUS BUSSINESS PRACTISES , VAMWE TINE MASHOP AND WE PAY RENT IWO MAVENDO MATOILETS AVO MASANITARY LANES EMOTOWN TSVINA YOGA YOGA ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.UNOONA MUNHU AKABATA BUCKET ACHISUKA MOTOKARI PAMBERI PECHICKEN INN KUITAWO HERE IKOKO .PAMBERI PE OK IN GWERU PATOVA NERANK YEMAKOMBI NO KUKANGANISA UKU HAPANA NYIKA YAKADARO.

    1. The culture of vending was introduced, promoted and protected, for a very long time, by non other than ZanuPF iteslf. ZanuPF is uncultured and disorderly in everything it does. They run everything like touts at a kombi rank.

  11. Skuza 17.What eliasha is doing is called freedom of speech not hatred. He is just calling a spade a spade of which some people don’t like. He doesn’t bit about the bushes. You can’t ban someone for saying the truth. Go around the world people don’t have jobs and sell fruit and vegetables in designated areas not everywhere in the city.

  12. Even during Jesus time they were a problem .remember he had to beat them .

  13. plywoodcentre@iwayafrica.co.zw

    Even during Jesus time they were a problem

  14. Saka umwe mupurisa akazongo baiwa nebanga. Ndomazvinobva.

  15. Police brutality cannot be condoned, but no sane person should sympathise with those combi drivers and whindis hoodlums! One ought to be insane or insincere to support the fact that these marauding combi rascals should be allowed to rule the city corners and roads at will.
    As for vendors, are you saying it is okay to have the streets littered with all sorts or wares ranging from clothing, footwear, household furniture, groceries, vegetables and all sorts leaving no room for foot walking?

  16. Your Name (required):Special Black

    I dont understand what you actually want. Yesterday you were denouncing the gvt for cholera outbreak. The gvt said lets go back to basics and started removing vendors from streets where some relieve themselves everywhere, you are crying again fighting to have vendors and combis cause havoc. If elders tell you that fire burns and then you go on to touch it whose fault is that. Leave Eliasha alone he doesnt want to walk in a dirty city.Hey Zimbabwe has smart people who want to catch the aroma of good food.

  17. We are chasing them out of CBD but are we putting measures to employ them in the near future .Let create employment and case them to the industries.

  18. Stop blaming the victims. The government should create enough jobs and the whole problem will be solved. Police brutality is unacceptable.

  19. ZANU PF chiwororo

    tibvisireiwo ma hwindi mutown please vakutokwidza bus fare as if vakagadzira road help us on that

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