1 August 2017

Zimbabwe: Zanu-PF Factional Wars Suspected As Soldiers Beat Up Police Officers in Harare

Photo: VOA
Soldiers in Zimbabwe (file photo).

A mob of soldiers, clad in Zimbabwe National Army gear, Tuesday late afternoon ran amok and mercilessly beat up ZRP officers in Central Harare for an as yet unknown reason.

According to those who witnessed the drama, a troop of soldiers armed with shamboks, logs and sticks was seen clearing Robert Mugabe Road beating up any police officer along the way.

Others said the soldiers came from different directions with some seen running after the police officers along Simon Muzenda Street (4th Street). Others were seen along Jason Moyo Avenue as they crossed First Street disturbing the smooth flow of the traffic during the pick hour.

Some of the attacked officers ran into Harare Central Police Station with the soldiers in hot pursuit.

Vendors were not spared too as their carts were overturned in the process with some civilians injured in the skirmishes.

A taxi driver who spoke to New Zimbabwe said he witnessed the soldiers attacking police officers.

"This is not good. The fights are frightening but, I heard the soldiers were provoked yesterday when traffic police threw spikes on a moving army truck in the CBD."

When contacted for a comment, Assistant Commissioner Superintended Paul Nyathi told New Zimbabwe that he had left his workplace and would only give a detailed response on Wednesday.

"I am not aware of anything of that sort and I am already home. I will find out what has happened by tomorrow," Supt. Nyathi said.

Zimbabweans were taken aback on Tuesday and some think that the clashes are related to current factional wars in Zanu PF.

According to Linda Masarira, "the public smiled and laughed" as the police were being beaten.

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