Sunday, 30 August 2020


AT LEAST 65 people have been arrested in Mazowe for destroying artefacts belonging to Mbuya Nehanda, the police have said. 

Mbuya Nehanda, also known as Nehanda Charwe Nyakasikana, was one of the spiritual leaders of the Shona during the 1896-97 first Chimurenga war. 

She was convicted without trial and was executed in 1898.
 National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said they have launched “Protect Mbuya Nehanda Heritage” operation to flush out all the illegal activities taking place in the area. 

“The police and other stakeholders have launched an operation dubbed ‘Protect Mbuya Nehanda Heritage,’ meant to flush out illegal settlers and miners who have been destroying sacred places, cultural, heritage sites and Government property and Mbuya Nehanda, Shavarudzi, Chebanga, Bakorambuya Nehanda, Chemachinda, Henderson and Mazowe Dam,” Nyathi said.
According to the national police spokesperson, the operation was launched on August 26 and has led to the recovery of mining equipment worth thousands of dollars. 

“Since the onset of the operation, a total of 65 suspects have been arrested for various offences which include criminal trespass, operating without shop licence, implementing a mining project without environmental impact assessment certificate among others. 

“Police also recovered 20 hammer mills, five compressors, four generators, two water pumps, two well pumps, three jack hammers, two Taurus batteries, two Ray 50W solar panels and approximately 10kg gold ore,” said Nyathi. 

The arrest of 65 people accused of destroying artefacts reportedly belonging to Mbuya Nehanda comes at a time the government is constructing a statue in her honour at the intersection of Julius Nyerere Way and Samora Machel Avenue in Harare. 

Early this month, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said Mbuya Nehanda’s statue in Harare is a status symbol for the iconic First Chimurenga heroine. 

“In this regard, the mounting of the statue of Mbuya Nehanda in Harare, our capital city, will immortalise the supreme sacrifice that was paid by our forebearers. 

“The location of this statue carries added historical meaning because the intersection of Samora Machel Avenue and Julius Nyerere Way is the spot where Mbuya Nehanda used to rest and drink water from a river that flowed at the site,” said Mnangagwa. Daily News


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