10 years for copper cable thieves 

Source: 10 years for copper cable thieves – NewsDay Zimbabwe

COPPER cable thieves will now face 10-year jail sentences after the Copper Amendment Bill sailed through the National Assembly last Thursday.

The country is currently struggling to deal with copper cable theft, which has been on the rise in the wake of an economic meltdown.

The Bill sailed through Committee reading stage and third reading stage without debate from legislators.

Justice minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said: “I want to thank members who debated the Copper Amendment Bill, their contributions and support to ensure that we come up with a minimum sentence to those who vandalise our copper cables and those who do not have the requisite papers to deal with copper.  We value the support that has been offered, the aim really being to ensure that we put up legislative measures that will act as deterrence to those that would want to deal in copper, or to vandalise our infrastructure.”

Ziyambi said the import of the Bill was to come up with a sentencing regime that is stringent enough to deter theft of copper cables and associated infrastructure.

He said the law was crafted in response to rampant vandalism of copper cables from Zesa and telecommunications infrastructure in the country.

“The intention of the legislation is to deter these copper cable thieves and illegal dealers with a mandatory sentence which limits the court’s lenience,” Ziyambi said.