Soldier assaults two villagers over bribery

POLICE in Beitbridge are investigating a case in which a suspected member of the Zimbabwe National Army assaulted two villagers allegedly for refusing to give him a bribe.

BY REX MPHISA

The suspected soldier, who was armed, allegedly beat up the two women on Tuesday this week after an altercation and one of the women, Esnath Mbedzi, had to be treated for injuries sustained at Beitbridge District Hospital.

Matabeleland South police spokesperson, Chief Inspector Philisani Ndebele, confirmed that police were investigating the case.

“We received that report and we are investigating. At the moment, we cannot say it is a member of the ZNA because no arrest has been made,” he said.

It is understood that the alleged ZNA member was arrested on Wednesday at Mbedzi’s homestead where he was trying to have her withdraw the case while also carrying a firearm. The case was referred to the Law and Order Section under case number RRB 3278330.

NewsDay established that Mbedzi and her friend, Miriam Moyo, were walking past a Zimbabwe Republic Police and ZNA security checkpoint along the Limpopo River opposite South Africa’s gate number 6 when they were stopped by three men. Two of the men were in civilian attire and the other in military fatigue, armed with a rifle.

The men allegedly demanded payment from the women so that they could pass through the checkpoint into Zimbabwe.

The women, who reside in Chipangwe Village, refused to pay, saying they were not coming from South Africa.

The soldier allegedly said since they did not want to pay, they should go “back” to South Africa for official deportation, but the women refused. The soldier then took a stick and started beating the women before releasing them.

Mbedzi proceeded to Beitbridge police where she filed a report.