More than a week since a Beitbridge chief was brutally assaulted by soldiers by ‘mistake’, no arrests have been made.
Beitbridge residents are angered by the police’s failure to deal with the soldiers who assaulted the youthful paramount chief David Mbedzi (24) on January 1 this year. He was only set free after immigration regional manager, Nqobile Ncube intervened.
Mbedzi is said to have been walking from Musina with three relatives when he was assaulted by soldiers from 1 Independent Company stationed at Beitbridge. One of the female soldiers allegedly lifted him by the belt while they took turns to beat him up, mocking him for being too young to be a chief.
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ZNA spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Alphios Makotore said that investigations into the incident are underway. Beitbridge East parliamentarian Albert Nguluvhe had this to say:
It is sad when people show such disrespect for traditional leaders. I hoped to engage the concerned soldiers, but something came up and I have to go to Gwanda.
The values of our traditional leaders have been upheld always and we feel justice should take its course and soonest. We should not disrespect our culture despite our posting in government. Although I cannot judge anyone, I have no reason not to believe the chief.
The Limpopo Civic Association, a Venda group condemned the appaling behaviour of the rogue soldiers. The group said in a statement:
These are rogue soldiers. They are evil. They tarnish their employer and should be discharged from service. They can easily become robbers. How many other people have they done this to and cases going unreported? We condemn this insult on our culture and people. We have hosted many soldiers but never before did we encounter such behaviour.