THE Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) has been implored to intensify patrols to monitor crime hotspots in and around Harare, particularly bus termini and streets where people are being mugged.
Several people told The Herald that it was no longer safe to move around in Harare’s Central Business District and residential areas any time after 5 pm, as some criminals were targeting them stealing cash, cellphones and other valuables.
There are some reports of groups of criminals targeting people along Sam Nujoma Street, Africa Unity Square, at major road intersections, in the Avenues area, the Harare Gardens and other roads during the evening.
Most people have reportedly lost their valuables and cash in a spate of robbery cases recently.
Some of the criminals are reportedly moving around in residential areas with unregistered vehicles targeting people, especially women, walking alone in the evening.
Most residential areas do not have street lights, making it easy for people to be mugged.
The ZRP recently urged members of the public to desist from using secluded paths and also to avoid keeping large amounts of money at home.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi recently assured citizens and visitors that adequate security measures had been put in place to ensure peace and tranquillity countrywide.
“The ZRP is conducting general patrols, blitz, stop and search patrols in all Central Business Districts, industrial sites, residential areas and other places, which are usually frequented by the public with a view of getting rid of the malady of criminality,” he said.
Meanwhile, the ZRP has recovered US$24 000 and ZAR120 000 cash stolen from a complainant in Bulawayo by a 20-year-old man who is on the run.
Asst Comm Nyathi said: “Members of the public are urged to be alert and avoid either keeping large sums of money at home or travelling with such amounts in vehicles.”
In another incident, two suspects have been arrested in Bulawayo after breaking into a house in the city.
“At the time of arrest, Arthur Maphosa (27) and Wilbert Sibanda (19) had already stolen various electrical household goods valued at US$265, which include a 21 inch Superman TV, 21 inch Diamond TV, Elsat decoder, Superman home theatre and two frying pans,” said Asst Comm Nyathi.
Police in Mutare are also investigating a case in which a 35-year-old man was found with US$10 000 cash, ZAR30 000 and $3 000 in the CBD in his vehicle.
Last week, police urged members of the public to ignore misleading messages circulating on social media alleging that there is an upsurge in criminal activities in some parts of the country, especially during the night.
This came as some people are circulating such false messages to instil fear and panic in the country.