Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter
ZANU-PF Politburo member Retired Colonel Tshinga Dube has slammed court officials for allegedly being involved in shady deals in stock theft cases resulting in repeat offenders constantly being released on bail.
Rtd Col Dube said two weeks ago police arrested three suspected cattle rustlers in Fort Rixon, Matabeleland South who had stolen his nine cattle.
He said he was however, shocked when the culprits were all granted bail despite being known repeat offenders.
Rtd Col Dube said he recovered his stolen cattle after police investigations.
“Last week I lost nine cattle to rustlers. My employees reported the matter to police in Fort Rixon who attended the scene and managed to track down the stolen cattle and recovered them. The police also arrested a suspect who led the officers to two other suspects and it was very clear that they were the offenders,” said Rtd Col Dube.
“However, we don’t seem to understand how the courts are operating as the suspects were all given bail despite being known repeat stock theft offenders. We don’t understand what is happening between these thieves and court officials. Why are they being given bail when they are repeat offenders?”
He said his employees had to fend off other cattle rustlers who had invaded his farm again last Monday.
Rtd Col Dube said what was worrying is that members of the public end up taking the law into their hands due to the failure by courts to decisively deal with known cattle thieves.
“I’m actually not the only victim of stock theft in my area. I’ve lost more than 30 cattle to thieves in the past and my neighbours have also lost up to 400 animals due to these stock thieves. What is worrying is that these criminals are not being jailed and keep coming for more. I had to discourage my boys who seemed determined to confront the alleged cattle rustlers. What is even worrying is that these suspected cattle rustlers even boast that nothing is going to happen to them even if they get arrested,” he said.
Rtd Col Dube said Shangani Growth Point has become a ready market for stolen cattle.Last week, police in Bulilima recovered 61 stolen cattle valued at US $30 000 and arrested three suspects.—@nqotshili