The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) has said it arrested 97 people across the country on Sunday 3 October for illegal mining.
ZRP also said two people were arrested for carrying dangerous weapons while 31 unregistered vehicles were impounded. Said the police in a statement:
On 3/10/21, Police arrested 97 people throughout the country for engaging in illegal mining activities, while two people were arrested for carrying dangerous weapons.
Cumulative arrests since the commencement of the operation targeting illegal miners and people carrying dangerous weapons stand at 49 906.
This comes amid reports that Zimbabwe is losing over US$200m annually through illicit financial flows (IFFs), which continue to ravage the economy.
In June 2019, the president of the Zimbabwe Mining Federation (ZMF), Ms Henrietta Rushwaya who herself is being accused of intending to smuggle 6kgs of smuggled gold, told a Chamber of Mines conference in Victoria Falls that 70 per cent of gold produced in the country “could be getting leaked through illicit means due to poor payment by Fidelity Printers and Refiners.”
The chaos in the mining industry worsened two years ago when machete-wielding gangs intensified their operations in gold mining towns.
Police also indicated that they impounded 31 unregistered motor vehicles across the country on the 3rd of October. Added the police:
A total of 14035 vehicles have been impounded since the inception of Operation ‘No to unregistered motor vehicle’ on 01/01/21. The Police also arrested 55 people for touting, bringing the total of touting related arrests to 22 380 since the operation commenced.
Police have in the past arrested many robbers who have been using unregistered vehicles in the commission of the robberies.
More: Pindula News