By Mthulisi Mathuthu
SW Radio Africa
16 January 2014
Police Wednesday reportedly shot one man dead and arrested three others in connection with the murder of four people whose bodies were discovered in an abandoned vehicle in Binga last week. Newspaper reports Thursday said it was not clear if the dead suspect was killed in a shoot-out with the police.
A Southern Eye report quoted a ‘highly placed source’ saying the shooting and the arrests occurred at a village located close to the Ngongonyane Bridge which is where the murders took place.
According to the report, national police spokesperson Charity Charamba told the paper that the police had issued a statement on the arrest but would not reveal more. Instead she referred the paper to the police’s public relations office in Harare, but they were unhelpful.
SW Radio Africa reported last week that the four people who were murdered were suspected to be illegal ivory buyers who were killed following a dispute over poached elephant tusks. In the same SW Radio Africa report the police expressed ignorance on the issue and a prominent Binga businessman, Jealous Sanso, said the police reaction was not surprising because some senior government officials are involved in the illegal ivory trade.
The murder victims have since been identified as Sithembiso Moyo, Alvin Canitious Nyirenda, Nkosana Mdlongwa and Leo Mthulisi Ndlovu, all from Bulawayo. Reports said two other suspects were Sinola Jameson Dube and his son Emmanuel Dube. Three bullet ridden bodies were found at the scene of the crime, but that of Ndlovu was found about 1km away, and he had been beheaded, something which is extremely unusual in Zimbabwe.