Families seek answers after two civilians caught in crossfire between Zimbabwe cops and robbery suspect


The distraught families of two people hit by a stray bullet during a shoot-out between Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) and a robbery suspect on Monday are disappointed that police are not doing enough to assist their loved ones.

The shooting occurred in Chitungwiza, 25km south of Harare. Police exchanged fire with a robbery suspect and it later emerged that a bullet, suspected to have been fired by police, had hit two civilians.

The victims were identified as Tashinga Mugwara and Pamela Muchazorwei.

Muchazorwei’s husband Aaron Sakala said the tragic incident has been painful for his family.

“As a family we are very hurt and disturbed by what happened. My wife is a mother of two young children. She worked as a vendor.

“The shooting has robbed her of the ability to work and look after her family. Pamela was shot in the knee and we don’t know the extent of the injury or whether she will have a permanent disability. We have not received any help from the police and it makes me feel angry. The hospital bills are mounting and l have no idea how to pay them,” said Sakala.

Muchazorwei underwent surgery to remove the bullet and is currently admitted at Chitungwiza Hospital.

The family of the other shooting victim is fearful and concerned it may be victimised for talking to the media. Mugwara also underwent surgery and is currently admitted at Parirenyatwa Hospital.

In a statement, ZRP said it was investigating the shooting and aware of the complaints by the residents of Chitungwiza.

“The ZRP is aware of the complaints by the residents of Chitungwiza in connection with a shooting incident where two people were shot.

“The police assures the public that investigations on the alleged misconduct by the police will be thoroughly investigated and nothing will be swept under the carpet,” read the police statement.

The shooting has prompted an outcry over violence by Zimbabwe police.

Chitungwiza Residents Trust director Alice Kuveya said the incident has left residents of the satellite town feeling afraid and unsafe.

“This was an incredibly frightening incident, many residents are afraid. It’s worrying that we haven’t received any further communication from police apart from the press statement. We don’t have  a clear understanding of  the circumstance that surrounded the shooting. Residents are now worried about their safety,” said Kuveya.

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Source: TimesLIVE

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