Sithatshisiwe Vuma, Sunday News Reporter
SHOTS were fired yesterday in Bulawayo as armed robbers pounced on a suspected illegal foreign currency dealer, robbing him of 110 000 rand and US$700.
Scores of onlookers gathered along Josiah Tongogara Street between 11th and 12th avenues to catch a glimpse of the drama as officers from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) cordoned off the area as they conducted their investigations.
Onlookers said the forex dealer was inside his car, a metallic blue Honda Fit, when the robbers smashed the driver’s front door window and grabbed the bag with money. The incident took place at about 11am. The armed robbers reportedly fired shots after the money changer, only identified as Bheki tried to give chase, together with his colleagues.
When the Sunday News crew arrived at the scene, police were completing indications while other illegal forex dealers, were milling around.
“The robbers parked their getaway vehicle just across the road from where Bheki had parked his car, two of them then walked to Bheki’s car and smashed the window, took the bag and ran towards 11th Avenue.
“When we tried to give chase they fired shots at us and then jumped into a grey Honda Fit that was parked just around the corner,” said one of the forex dealers.
Another witness said the robbers pounced on Bheki just after he had finished counting the money.
“When I saw the two men robbing Bheki I drove my car so that we could block them, however, they fired gun shots at my car and I moved for them to pass,” said a witness who is also a forex dealer.
Bulawayo police spokesperson Inspector Abednico Ncube said he was yet to receive the report on the matter.
“It is too early for me to comment on this robbery because I am still waiting for the report,” said Insp Ncube.
Over the past few months, Bulawayo has witnessed an increase in the number of armed robbery cases.