As Zanu PF factions destroy each other, the military will have a huge say as to who would take over from President Mugabe.


As Zanu PF factions destroy each other, the military will have a huge say as to who would take over from President Mugabe.


He is a controversial prophet who continues to draw large crowds with his promise of miracles. But as his popularity soars he faces all sorts of allegations. So far he has survived.


Two secretary generals tried to topple him but failed. His wife walked out but returned home. Now MDC leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, is plotting his way to State House.


Latest news, entertainment and sports.

Friday 23 February 2024




THE car park near the Chronicle building in Bulawayo was the scene of a dramatic, but surgical police raid yesterday, as detectives swooped in on the notorious drug hotspot.

The operation was the result of months of surveillance and intelligence gathering by the CID Drugs and Narcotics division, who had been monitoring the illegal activities taking place next to the city’s largest media house, Zimpapers.

A Saturday Chronicle news crew witnessed the police operation that was planned and executed with precision, speed, and minimal collateral damage.

 A small team of highly trained officers targeted the specified drug ring, using intelligence and surveillance to guide their actions.

Resisting the distraction around them, the detectives stuck to their objective as they searched and arrested several suspects, who had been using the street as a cover for their drug trade.

The suspects had been pretending to wash cars, while in fact they were selling and consuming various drugs and substances.

Detectives from CID Drugs and Narcotics division quiz suspected drug peddlers at a car was along George Silundika Street yesterday

The newscrew witnessed the detectives escorting a Ford Ranger with South African plates, on suspicion that it had no proper documentation.

The drug peddlers were unaware that they had been under the watchful eyes of the police, who had received numerous tip-offs from the public about the rampant drug abuse in the area.

Inspector Abednico Ncube, the Bulawayo police spokesman, confirmed the raid and praised the efforts of the CID Drugs and Narcotics team.

“The raid conducted along George Silundika and 9th Avenue is the result of ongoing efforts by the police targeting drug and substance abuse users and dealers. Police will continue to use information provided by members of the public and by gathering their own intelligence to pounce on drug dealers in the city.

“The CID Drugs and Narcotics team has been receiving information that a lot of illegal activities are taking place in that area where some individuals purport to be washing cars yet are involved in drug peddling,” he said.

He added that the police will announce the exact number of arrests and the types of drugs seized in due course.

The raid was part of a wider crackdown on drug trafficking in Bulawayo, which has become a serious crime problem in the city.

 Last year, the Chronicle exposed how drug lords have been recruiting street car washers, vendors, sex workers and street kids to act as their agents, using them to distribute drugs and substances such as methamphetamine (crystal meth), marijuana, Broncleer (a cough syrup known as ‘ngoma’), and illicit alcohol (‘njengu’).  The drug traffickers have been employing creative and covert methods to evade law enforcement, posing a significant challenge to the authorities. Chronicle


Fire has gutted at least eight market stalls at Chegutu Bus Terminus, destroying wares including electrical and mining equipment worth nearly US$50 000.

The cause of the fire, which broke out at around midnight on Tuesday, has not yet been established.

Devastated stall holders who had mining tools, electrical and general equipment destroyed said they needed resources to restock.

“We do not know how we are going to recover from this devastating blow. I lost an inventory worth about US$6500,” said a stall holder who had his mining tools destroyed.

The fire consumed everything including the roofing material.

Chairperson of the market Mr Jealous Phiri said nothing could be salvaged after the fire broke out.

“It is not yet clear as to what could have triggered the fire but the effort of Chegutu Fire Brigade could not stop the fire. Everything was destroyed as a result,” he said.

Chegutu West legislator Cde Shakemore Timburwa toured the market to assess the extent of damage.

“What we see here is painful and we are here to see how best the affected families can be helped to recover,” said Cde Timburwa.

Going forward, he said, there was need to work with insurance companies to come up with tailored packages for vendors.

“The people affected here are managing to look after their families from selling their wares. We need to come up with interventions that ensure they are not be destroyed forever in the event of such mishaps,” he said.

The legislator took measurements of the destroyed stalls to come up with a bill of quantities for the restoration of the market. Herald


THE Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) has tightened its screws on companies contracted by the government to rehabilitate national roads after some companies were blamed for substandard work.

The developments come after an outcry against private companies over shoddy work after some of the rehabilitated roads developed potholes within a few months.

Government rolled out the Emergency Road Rehabilitation Programme (ERRP) in 2021 after President Emmerson Mnangagwa declared the country’s roads a national disaster.

Under ERRP, the government is targeting to rehabilitate 10 000 kilometres of roads countrywide, but mainly urban and trunk roads.

However, there is concern over shoddy work by some contractors, with the government threatening to blacklist them.

Zinara chief executive officer Nkosinathi Ncube told the Zimbabwe Independent that the road administrator will not pay contractors that fail to meet the required standards and specifications.

“After a road authority has submitted its interim payment certificate (IPC), it invites a Zinara engineer to undertake thorough quality checks and confirm that the work was done according to the specifications laid out in the scope works,” he said.

“If the work does not meet the required standards and specifications, Zinara does not pay. This model of monitoring and evaluation of projects will go a long way in improving the quality of road works being undertaken.”

Ncube added that the parastatal has more technical capability to examine and approve road construction projects carried out by local authorities prior to the completion of drawdowns for payouts.

“Over the past year, we have increased

our technical capacity through the engagement of provincial engineers who play a critical monitoring evaluation and support role for road authorities throughout the country,” Ncube said.

“They are equipped and qualified to inspect and certify road works undertaken by road authorities before drawdowns of disbursements are done.”

The Zinara boss said the state-controlled parastatal is continually working with stakeholders to increase funding available for disbursement road authorities.

Zinara is continually working with various stakeholders to increase funding available for disbursement to road authorities.

However, Ncube also revealed that the organisation does not raise funds to build new roads.

According to him, the institution was also exploring ways to improve the value of disbursements to local authorities for them to deliver more efficiently on the ground.

He said they are also exploring disbursing value preserved disbursements in the form of fuel or even capital items such as machinery.

Zinara said the e-tolling project is currently underway whose tender process recently closed and we will soon be appointing a vendor.

“We are confident that our strategic agenda for the year is robust enough to help us to achieve our intended (goals),” Ncube said.

In January this year, our sister paper the Standard reported that the Bulawayo City Council (BCC) is set to receive a ZW$12 billion windfall from Zinara for road rehabilitation.

According to latest council minutes, Zinara has indicated that the local authority’s allocation for this year is ZW$12,1 billion, an amount which is, however, far below the ZW$117 billion the city requires for routine and periodic maintenance works.

“The city intend(s) to use 30% of the allocation, ZW$3 637 287 936,08 for routine maintenance and ZW$8 487 005 184,21 for periodic maintenance. The routine maintenance works would comprise of pothole patching, localised pavement reconstruction works, signage, road markings and street lighting repairs city wide, while periodic maintenance would include reconstruction works on Wellington road, Murchinson Road and Luveve 5 roads,” the minutes read.

The council noted that priority roads needing urgent rehabilitation were 23,1km long and would cost an estimated US$20,6 million or ZW$117,3 billion using the central bank auction rate of US$1 to ZW$5 790, 0545 as of November 30 last year.

“Due to budgetary constraints, the city would have had the capacity to rehabilitate the top seven roads contained in the key priority roads table (10,8km) estimated to cost US$5 650,790.

“The source of funding would be Emergency Roads Rehabilitation Programme 2, council’s own revenue stream and devolution funds," the minutes state. Zimbabwe Independent



A LOCAL pastor lost his Honda Fit he left parked at a house in Stoneridge Park after it ran out of fuel on Tuesday night.

Pastor Taurai Tembo (38) of Rise and Shine Ministries was reported to have asked to leave his vehicle at 44-year-old Joseph Musasa’s house when the fuel tank ran dry at around 9pm.

Tembo removed the battery and handed it over to Musasa, promising to return the following day.

However, when Tembo returned the next day, he found the car missing and reported it to the police.

Harare provincial police spokesperson, Inspector Luckmore Chakanza, confirmed that police are investigating the theft.

“Police are investigating the theft of a vehicle in Stoneridge Park,” said Insp Chakanza.

“Complainant switched off the ignition, removed the battery from the vehicle and locked all the doors and windows except for one window which was broken.

“On February 21 at around 11am, the complainant went back to the house intending to collect his vehicle, but when he arrived, he noticed that it was not there.

“He phoned the house owner about the whereabouts of his vehicle and was told that he thought he had taken his vehicle,” said Insp Chakanza.

The car’s value was stated as US$3 000. H Metro


A CHITUNGWIZA woman is being accused of murdering her married boyfriend, who died at her house on Christmas Day last year.

Sharon Chidamba (40) appeared at the Chitungwiza Magistrates’ Court where she was granted US$100 bail.

The State said Chidamba was engaged in a dispute with the late Edward Chakanetsa after a beer drink.

Chidamba is believed to have attacked Chakanetsa with an unknown object leaving him with a fractured skull leading to his death.

Prior to her arrest on January 6, Chidamba was accused of giving conflicting statements to Chakanetsa’s relatives, who suspected foul play.

In one of her alleged accounts, Chidamba claimed Chakanetsa downed rat poison before she rushed him to a local hospital where he later died.

However, the family made a police report after post mortem results showed that Chakanetsa died from an attack by a blunt object.

Chidamba is expected back in court soon while police investigations into the murder continue. H Metro




A Guruve-based Chinese mining company has been fined USD$700 by a Bindura magistrate for using Starlink equipment in violation of provisions of the  Postal and Telecommunications Act.

Starlink is a satellite internet constellation operated by American aerospace company SpaceX. It has not yet been licensed to operate in Zimbabwe.

According to the National Prosecuting Authority, SAN He mining company’s unlawful use of Starlink equipment came to light on December 5, 2023 when the police received a report from the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority.

The police proceeded to the mine where they recovered the Star-Link router and antenna. Newsday 



Thursday 22 February 2024


 IMAGINE waking up to gunshots and finding gunmen holding your family hostage…

This was a real-life experience for a businessman in Umguza in Matabeleland North.

The businessman, name withheld for security reasons, had his sleep interrupted by the unmistakable sound of a gun at his shop last Wednesday.

Thinking the worst, he rushed to the shop to investigate.

He was greeted by a disturbing sight that was infinitely worse than what he had imagined.

His wife and children were lying on the floor with three armed men standing over them.

One of the gunmen hit him viciously on the back of the head with the butt of his pistol and threatened to shoot him.

The trio allegedly demanded cash and cellphones. They instructed him to join his family on the floor.

It is said one of the robbers opened the cash box and took US$100 which was inside and two cellphones. The gang then fled, leaving the family traumatised.

The incident was reported to the police and investigations were carried out leading to the arrest of Makhosini Mathobela (32).

He was found with a pistol which was taken to CID forensic ballistic for examination.

Mathobela has appeared before Bulawayo regional magistrate Dambudzo Malunga facing an armed robbery charge.

He pleaded not guilty and was remanded in custody to 26 February.

Police are still hunting his accomplices. B Metro


A 50-year-old American national has been fined US$300 after he was found guilty of contravening the Immigration Act and escaping from lawful custody.

Austin Ray was facing two counts of contravening the Immigration Act and escaping from lawful custody when he appeared before Harare Magistrate Mrs Ruth Moyo.

Ray is from the United States of America and is a holder of an American passport number A07061933.

The State’s case was that on February 19, Ray arrived at Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport, Harare, aboard Airlink flight number 42104.

Upon his arrival at the immigration checkpoint, the accused tendered his American passport to an immigration officer intending to apply for a holiday visa.

After perusal of the passport, it was discovered that the accused was issued with a notice to visitor, to leave the country on or before February 7, 2024.

The court heard that Ray did not have written authorisation to enter the country from the Minister as required.

As a result, Ray was denied entry and was placed in the Immigration temporary holding cells pending deportation.

On the same date, Ray then made his way into the country illegally, without a valid permit.

On another count, Ray escaped from lawful custody at Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport.

The court heard that he was refused entry into Zimbabwe by immigration officials after failing to meet the requirements.

Ray was placed in a temporary holding facility at the airport pending deportation, he tempered with the locking system of the holding cell and made his way into the country thereby escaping from lawful custody. Herald




TWO Harare men have appeared in court facing allegations of masquerading as CID police officers and committing fraudulent activities.Innocent Chimutsi (44) and Tawanda Marabada (36) were facing two counts of impersonation when they appeared before Harare Magistrate Mr Dennis Mangosi.

They were granted US$100 bail each and remanded to April 4, for a possible trial date.

It is the State’s case that sometime in January 2024, complainant Andsen Patson came across an advert on Facebook where the duo had advertised Certificates of Sponsorship (COS) for the United Kingdom.

Patson responded to the advert because he wanted a COS for his wife who wanted to travel abroad.

The court heard that the duo charged 5 500 British Pounds and a deposit of 4000 British Pounds was made through Patson’s uncle who is based in the United Kingdom.

The parties agreed to pay the balance upon receipt of the COS. After the transfer, Patson received an offer letter via WhatsApp account number +447400352877 and a COS.

However, during the application for a visa, Patson discovered that the COS was fake and efforts to contact the accused persons were fruitless.

The court heard that the complainant never made a police report after he noticed that he was duped.

He tried continuously to contact the unknown accused person on his Facebook account but there was no response.

On February 20, Chimutsi contacted Patson using the same Facebook account and indicated that he was a police detective stationed at CID Frauds.

Chimutsi allegedly misrepresented that he was investigating the matter.

Patson became suspicious since he never made a police report.

The complainant sought advice from Harare Central Police officers.

Chimutsi contacted the complainant in the presence of police officers and demanded US$100 for fuel to go and recover the money.

Chimutsi further demanded a compensation of 500 British Pounds upon recovery of the money.

A bait was made that parties meet at the Monomutapa Building with the US$100, the court heard.

Patson engaged ZRP Harare Central police officers leading to the arrest of Chimutsi who was in the company of Marabada who also masqueraded as a police detective. Herald