Eight armed robbers raided Gateway High School in Harare over the weekend and used explosives to blow open the safe to steal more than US$250 000 cash.
No one was injured and police have launched a manhunt for the robbers.
Sources close to the investigations yesterday said the eight first attacked a security guard who was manning the premises around midnight on Saturday before they forced open the office where the safe was positioned.
They then used explosives to blow up the safe and got away with the cash.
A team of detectives from CID Homicide, which deals with all very serious violent crimes, was yesterday morning at the school to probe the matter further.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said yesterday the police were confident they would arrest the gang.
“The ZRP confirms that investigations are in progress in connection with the armed robbery case which occurred at Gateway High School, Harare, on March 28, 2021 when eight suspects pounced on a guard and blasted an office safe and went away with US$250 000. We are confident the robbers will be arrested,” he said.
In a statement, the chairperson of the school’s board of trustees, Mrs Sarah Cross, said: “It is with great distress and concern that we inform you of an armed robbery that took place at Gateway High School on Saturday 27 March 2021. At midnight, a gang of eight robbers entered the school premises and blew up the strong room in the administration centre using dynamite.
“Though no one was injured, there was money stolen. Police and CID have been engaged and investigations are currently proceeding. We do have night guards and we work through a security firm, and all of this will be part of the investigations,” she said.
Armed robbery cases have been on the increase countrywide although gangs are being rounded up and accounted for.
In one of the most recent gang eliminations, a suspected female armed robber who was part of an eight-member gang that has been raiding in Harare, Mutoko and Macheke, was shot and killed following a shoot-out with police in Kuwadzana. Police arrested seven of her accomplices who have been identified as Kudzanai Manyonga (35), Tonia Farai Ndoro (27), Prosper Magwejani (44), Gilbert Chikukwa (54), Chancellor Thandi (40), Robinson Chinhuka (42) and Amiah Chayi (18). The woman was identified as Lucy Nyakudya (20).
Last month, 11 armed robbers were caught red-handed by police and other security personnel while they were in the process of robbing a 30-year-old man at Maruta Shopping Centre in Hatfield using two .303 Lee Enfield rifles, iron bars, a sjambok and catapults.
The police, who were manning a roadblock rushed to the rescue of the man after hearing commotion near the shopping centre.
Those arrested were Tatenda Manongwa (26), Jabulani Majoni (32), Blessing Mabhureni (27), John Machingauta (26), Piyson Pamehenza (age not given), Lawrence Kwashira (20), Tinashe Nyamaumba (25), Professor Majaya (28), Ashington Chamunorwa (31), Tashinga Madzana (age not given) and Farai Mangwanani (32).
Another four armed robbers, including a serving member of the ZRP were killed, while two others were arrested when they resisted arrest by shooting at the police who returned fire when they were caught after robbing a Harare businessman of US$10 000.
While four of the armed robbers were killed when the police shot back, Blessing Bheura (29) and Tichaona Kariwa (33) of Domboshava were arrested. Those that were killed are Constable Kudzai Kanjera (41) of ZRP Hatfield, Admire Nhetekwa (26), Brian Chibaya (37) and Tatenda Chari (35).
Police received a tip off that the robbers were planning to pounce on the businessman and they ambushed them soon after the robbery. One of the suspects, Bheura, had just been released on bail pending appeal.