ZNA soldier killed in robbery investigation 

Source: ZNA soldier killed in robbery investigation –Newsday Zimbabwe

THE Zimbabwe Joint Operations Committee (JOC) is investigating circumstances surrounding last week’s fatal shooting of a soldier by police details in diamond rich Chiadzwa, Manicaland province, a leaked internal police report has revealed.

The case was reported at Mutare Central Police Station under CR 255/12/22.

According to the internal report, JOC dispatched members of the Ferret team after four CID (Criminal Investigations Department) members shot and killed a Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) soldier, Corporal Chitaka Tiwayi.

Tiwayi was serving under the 3 Infantry Brigade based in Mutare during an operation to nab armed robbers who had terrorised villagers in Zimunya, Marange district.

The Ferret Force is a combined team of Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) officers, the army, military intelligence, police and police internal investigation agents.

This followed a series of armed robbery cases recorded from December 12 to 21 in the Chiadzwa area this year.

“It was around 2300hrs when four armed male adults in civilian attire (to be referred as CID members in the report) entered the shop.

“The four police officers armed with AK-47s instructed the civilians to lie on the floor while at the door of the shop amid loud music and fired three shots in the air,” the report read.

Tiwayi was rushed to Victoria Chitepo General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

However, the report adds that two suspected robbers disappeared during the scuffle.

“Tendai Ruchiyo (the target) and another unknown accused person managed to escape while the detectives managed to arrest Tawanda Mushawa (a suspect) in the shop,” the report read.

According to the report, Tendai, a younger brother to Tiwayi, who was in the bar when the incident occurred, accused the police of using excessive force and acting irrationally.

“Nobody was armed in the shop and the CID members could have closed the door and ordered the small number of people inside to comply after lowering the volume of the radio,” he said.

He said Tiwayi thought the four police details were robbers because they were in civilian clothing, adding that the law enforcement agents did not know the suspects.

Manicaland provincial police spokesperson Inspector Nobert Muzondo referred questions to police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi.

“I cannot comment on the issue, talk to Nyathi,” he said.

Nyathi confirmed the incident, but insisted that the late soldier was one of the suspects.

“As far as we are concerned, these were armed robbers and the police officers were in the process of effecting an arrest, and there was a confrontation and a shootout. It’s not like they had targeted a particular individual. The person whom you are referring to as a solder was part of the suspects,” Nyathi said.