The Zimbabwe Republic Police has arrested a total of 93 drug peddlers and recovered drugs worth over $8,2 million, under the ongoing operation, “No to Crystal Meth’, as they declared war on drug lords.
According to police the suspects were arrested between May 10 and 17 countrywide. Of the 93 arrested, 26 are still in custody while the other 67 have been convicted and they are awaiting to be sentenced.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said they had intensified the operation and warned drug peddlers that they will be arrested and face the full wrath of the law.
“The ZRP has intensified operation ‘No to Crystal Meth’ and all drug peddlers are emphatically warned that they risk being arrested. From May 10 to May 17, 2021 a total of 93 suspects were nabbed, of those 26 were detained and 67 were convicted.
“Illicit drugs valued at ZW$8 242 230 were recovered,” he said.
The operation also comes after last month, 201 people were arrested on allegations of selling dangerous drugs and smoking mbanje in and around Harare, as the police operation targeting drug peddlers continued.
A police crackdown on drug peddlers and syndicates started recently, with 143 peddlers arrested and their bases destroyed in raids focusing on Harare and Chitungwiza.
Those raids concentrated on Mbare, Chitungwiza, Mabvuku, Epworth, Dzivarasekwa, Glen Norah, Mufakose, Southview and Highfield.
Most of them were arrested while smoking mbanje, while others were caught selling sex-enhancing tablets and other illicit drugs such as BronCleer.
In most suburbs, criminal dealers sell dangerous drugs to adults and children in broad day light.
Besides mbanje, probably still the most popular illegal drug, other commonly abused drugs are crystal methamphetamine commonly known as “mutoriro”, “dombo” or “guka”, plus ganja cakes, a prohibited cough syrup called BronCleer (bronco), and illicit beers known as “musombodhiya” in street lingo.
Cocaine has been appearing, with a recent “drug mule” found with 4,3kg as he tried to enter Zimbabwe.
Recently, Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage Minister Kazembe Kazembe said drug cartels and individuals peddling drugs in Zimbabwe or using the country as a transit point will be hunted down.
Police are also conducting drug abuse awareness campaigns countrywide with a view to save the masses from the devastating effects of the dangerous substances.
The CID Drugs and Narcotics section recently embarked on an operation to curb drug abuse code-named “No to drug and substance abuse” and a number of suspects were rounded up.
At least 30 suspects were arrested for abusing and dealing in illicit drugs in this initial round up.
According to the police, the illicit drugs in circulation in the country are classified into the following categories: depressants, stimulants and hallucinogens, narcotics, skin lighteners, body enlargement products and sex enhancers.
Drug abuse is also contributing to the rise in commission of serious offences, the police said.