A MINE worker was shot dead while several others were injured when about 10 robbers armed with a gun and machetes went on the rampage attacking people in Maphisa, Matobo District on Thursday night.
The armed robbers who targeted a mining compound and shops, randomly fired shots.
Corgen Moyo (42) who was employed at Antelope Milling Stamp, died on the spot after the armed robbers shot him while forcing their way into his room at the mine compound.
After raiding and shooting Moyo dead, the robbers moved to Falcon Complex, about a kilometre away, where Zanu-PF district offices are also housed and attacked workers at the shops.
There, the armed robbers also randomly fired shots and got away with R4 000 and US$80.
A Chronicle news crew yesterday visited the areas that were subjected to terror.
There was a sombre atmosphere as people were still trying to come to terms with what had befallen them the previous night.
By 2PM yesterday, Moyo’s body was still to be removed from the scene as police at the scene were waiting for the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) detectives from Gwanda.
Maphisa is 84km from Gwanda.
The victims revealed how the armed robbers randomly fired at people while attacking some with machetes.
“These people arrived just before midnight and it’s not like we had gone to bed. Some of us were still killing time at a fire place. They invaded the compound carrying a gun that we suspect was an AK47. They were also armed with machetes and started shooting at random. Some of us managed to escape as we were outside,” said one of the survivors.
Moyo’s brother, Mr Forget Moyo said he witnessed his sibling’s killing as they were together in their room when the armed robbers pounced on them.
“I was preparing to go to bed and my brother was already asleep. I heard noises coming from outside and a few minutes later someone was at our door. I tried to push the door to prevent them from entering but they overpowered me. They had already fired a shot and the bullet went through the door. When they entered the room I bolted out and by then I had not realised that the bullet had hit my sleeping brother,” said Forget.
He said he was later to learn that his brother had been shot dead.
Their father, Mr Nathaniel Moyo, who was among other family members that had arrived at the mine compound, said he received a call at about midnight from one of his sons alerting him that Corgen had been killed.
“When I arrived here, I requested to see my son and the police officer allowed me to enter the room. Indeed, he was dead, a bullet went through his forehead and exited through the back of his head. We are now waiting for the police to complete their investigations so that we can also do what we have to do. But we are concerned that police have taken too long to start investigations.
“The body should have been taken to a mortuary by now but it’s still stuck in the room as we wait for detectives. We are worried that his body will end up decomposing,” said Mr Moyo.
He said the armed robbers had robbed him of his son who left behind a wife and four children, one of them still breastfeeding.
Antelope 12 Milling Stamp manager Mr Taurai Vengesai said everyone at the mine compound was now living in fear following the raid by the robbers.
“We are all terrified by this attack on innocent people who were going about their business. How safe are we in mining areas when armed robbers can just pounce on us any time? We have been told that they also raided the Complex where they attacked several people and got away with cash,” said Mr Vengesai.
He said police should swiftly react to reports of armed robberies.
“From the time we reported to the police that we had been raided, police officers should have rounded the suspects at the complex.
“Those guys were walking about but police took their time to arrive at the scene and the robbers eventually disappeared.
“We are told that two days back, armed robbers also raided Hakuna shops, 10km from Maphisa Centre.
“The investigating CID officers are yet to arrive at the scene. Maybe if they had swiftly attended the matter, we wouldn’t be in this situation,” he said.
Mr Vengesai said his company had to provide fuel to enable police officers to attend to the robbery scene.
At Falcon Complex, some victims said shots were also randomly fired as the robbers made their way into several shops.
They attacked three women, some with machetes demanding money.
One of the victims, Miss Elizabeth Moyo said the armed robbers used the machete to hit her after she declined to reveal where she kept the money.
“Fearing for my life I revealed where the money was and they got away with R4 000 and US$80,” said Miss Moyo.
Another shop attendant Miss Mongiwa Moyo said she was treated at Maphisa District Hospital after the savage attack.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said they were investigating the case. He said the victim was shot twice on the left eye and right shoulder and he died on the spot.