Police top brass axed

HARARE - At least 30 high-ranking Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) officers have been axed from the force in a sweeping purge that seems to be targeted at those perceived to be close to former police chief, Augustine Chihuri.

A number of senior police officers have been sent packing in an operation sources said was targeting “criminals” around Chihuri — a statement adapted from a military operation that prompted the fall of former president Robert Mugabe in November last year.

ZRP insiders told the Daily News yesterday day letters of termination of employment were despatched to 30 senior cops on Wednesday evening.

According to the letters, the officers have been asked to leave the force within 24 hours and will be entitled to a three months’ salary in lieu of three months’ notice of termination.

“This letter serves to advise you of your retirement from the Zimbabwe Republic Police in terms of section 22 subsection three of the Police Act (Chapter 11:10) effective from midnight on the January 19, 2018. You will be paid three months’ salary in lieu of three months’ notice of termination of service,” reads a copy of the termination letter to the affected officers.

The letter was signed by ZRP acting commissioner general, Godwin Matanga.

ZRP spokesperson, Paul Nyathi, refused to comment on the developments yesterday claiming he was attending to “more pressing issues”.

The purging affected four ZRP deputy commissioner generals, namely Innocent Matibiri (human resources), widely thought to be a relative of fallen former president Robert Mugabe, Levy Sibanda (head-operations), Olga Bungu (head-commissioners’ pool at the police general headquarters) and Josephine Shambare (crime).

The axe also fell on ZRP press and public relations department head, Charity Charamba as well as Erasmus Makodza who was in charge of police intelligence.

Both were senior assistant commissioners.

Other senior assistant commissioners who have fallen by the wayside include ZRP head of transport, Grace Ndebele and a Criminal Investigations Department director, identified just as Masukuka.

Senior assistant commissioners, Mekia Tanyanyiwa and Angeline Guvamombe, both in charge of the Support Unit, have also been fired.

Also shown the door were chief staff officer in charge of police printers, Prudence Chakanyuka, national quartermaster section chief staff officer, Grace Maenzanise, director of the legal services department, Eve Mlilo Mlilo, all of whom were senior assistant commissioners.

Others of the same rank are Godfrey Munyonga, whose station was not given, chief staff officer in charge of operations Douglas Nyakutsikwa; Edward Fusire; Stephen Mutamba; Nonkosi Ncube and Justice Chengeta.

Many other lower ranking officers were also fired.

News of the purging was received with jubilant celebrations among low-ranking officers, highlighting the lack of popularity of the police top brass, according to impeccable sources.

Independent inquiries by the Daily News appeared to indicate that the purging was partly influenced by a letter written by junior police officers to Vice President Constantino Chiwenga.

In the letter, which was seen by the Daily News, the junior officers complained about the ill-treatment they received at the hands of Chihuri and his lieutenants.

For instance, the cops highlighted that they were being asked to fund their bosses’ luxuries from their meagre monthly salaries.

Some of the fees the junior officers were reportedly paying included monthly recreational fees of $5; a badger’s gala fee of $35; the Kuyedza Women’s Club fee amounting to $10; an office fund of $5 and a disposals gala fee of $5.

Police officers earn an average salary of $450 per month.

“At the end of the day, we are left with hardly any money to fend for our families and that is why we are always incurring debts and being exploited by loan sharks,” reads part of the letter written in December last year.

The Daily News also understands from its deep seated police sources that on Monday, there was an internal radio communication to the effect that all funds which the cops were being forced to pay which are not outlined in the Standing Order Book 1 had been phased out.

Chihuri, was booed by a capacity crowd at the 60 000 seat National Sports Stadium in November last month before he was forced to resign by President Emmerson Mnangagwa a few weeks later.

He had presided over an unpopular police force, undermined by a medieval violent policing method and corruption tendencies.

Comments (3)

How do I see today's Daily News when I am in the UK? Be realistic and move with the times

Mukanya wa Svosve - 19 January 2018

Daily news, there are other sources of this news saka you wanting people to buy your newspaper. This tactic only works if the story you have is an exclusive one. Ku Herald, Newsday tatoverenga nyaya iyi.

Tatenda - 19 January 2018

whatever the strategy its not for this time, we are on instant news consumption now. lights on there!!!!

uncle Real - 19 January 2018

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