AT least 200 suspected panners allegedly ran amok last week, disarming and assaulting two police officers, after they were ordered off a gold claim at Makaha in Mudzi South district.
Police later recovered one of the firearms after calling for reinforcement from Marondera.
National police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba confirmed the incident yesterday, adding the suspects were arrested and the matter was now before the courts.
“This should be a strong warning to those doing illegal activities and attacking police officers on duty,” she said.
“These panners have been arrested and they will face the full wrath of the law. You shouldn’t glorify when police officers are attacked. Police have a role to play maintaining peace. If we leave people doing illegal things, then there will be lawlessness
The officer was allegedly brandishing a suspected “forged” Claim Certificate.
This reportedly angered the panners who then disarmed the police officers, tied them together with pieces of wire and indiscriminately beat them.
“Police from Makosa Police Station came to the rescue of their two colleagues, but they were outnumbered by the panners and had to call for reinforcements from Marondera,” the source said.
“One gun was recovered, but the other one is still missing. The police descended on the panners from Wednesday to Friday last week. Several of them were injured, but others fled