The Herald (Harare)

Zimbabwe: Police Seize 2,140kg of Marijuana

POLICE in Mabvuku yesterday arrested a man found with mbanje weighing 2 140kg with a street value of more than US$200 000.

The man is suspected to have been taking the contraband to Epworth. The mbanje was in a T35 truck belonging to Chido Zindoga.

Mabvuku Police Station officer-in-charge Inspector Muyambi Muza said the truck was intercepted near Tafara Flats by policemen on patrol.

The policemen ordered the driver to stop after becoming suspicious of his load. Inspector Muza said three men jumped off the truck and fled the scene.

The driver was arrested and admitted to carrying the contraband. The driver, Bhauti Rusiyano (45), said he had been hired by the three men who escaped.

He identified one of the suspects as Samutuku.

"Samutuku approached me yesterday to ferry some household property to Mudzi which I did without any problem. After that he asked me to do another job for them which was to carry some tobacco which they said they wanted to sell at Boka Tobacco Sales Floor in Harare.

"We left Mutoko for Harare at 12 midnight. On the way I later on became suspicious of the load because of the manner that they were fearing police along the way. I couldn't tell the police that I found at all roadblocks because I feared for my life and that's why I decided to drive through Mabvuku because I knew I would find police who would come to my rescue," he said.

Acting Harare provincial spokesperson Assistant Inspector Tarisai Dube said police were still investigating the case.

She warned people dealing in mbanje and other illegal drugs to stop.

"I can confirm that police have arrested a man who was driving a truck loaded with mbanje while three other suspects fled when the vehicle was stopped by the police.

"We don't condone the use of, let alone selling of mbanje in this country and anyone who is caught breaking this law will be arrested," said Ass Insp Dube.

Last month, police in Southerton arrested a truck driver after he was found in possession 2 400 kilogrammes of mbanje. The case is still pending in the courts.

They are also suspicions that the mbanje was finding its way from Mozambique into Zimbabwe.

The drug has a ready market in Zimbabwe while the country is also used as a transit point for mbanje.

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