MATABELELAND South police have launched a manhunt for four gold panners from Gwanda, believed to be local bullies, who allegedly teamed up and murdered an artisanal miner at Valentine Mine in Gwanda on Tuesday.
By Pamela Mhlanga
Provincial spokesperson Assistant Inspector Christopher Ngwenya yesterday confirmed the incident that occurred on May 28 at around 4:30pm at Valentine Mine in Blanket Farm, Gwanda.
Ngwenya said on the day, the fugitives, Fortunate Ncube of Gwakwe village under village head Lucha Nkomo and Chief Mathema, Elijah Gordon and Christopher Sibanda of Sigodo Stands in Gwanda and Phathisani Ngwenya of Lushongwe village under Chief Mathema allegedly teamed up and murdered the 53-year-old Isaac Gwera of Blanket farm in
“The accused persons who are suspected to be bullies in the area, teamed up and proceeded to Valentine Mine at Blanket Farm where they confronted Gwera and his workmates who were all in the shaft mining gold ore,” Ngwenya said.
Ngwenya, on his arrival at the shaft, said the accused persons immediately ordered the now deceased and his workmates to vacate the shaft before assaulting them with stones and logs.
“Gwera and his workmates ran out of the shaft and unfortunately Gwera fell down,” Ngwenya said.
“He was then caught and severely assaulted by the accused persons before he was left unconscious.”
Ngwenya said Gwera was later picked up by his colleagues who ferried him to Gwanda Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
The matter was reported to police in Gwanda who attended the scene. The accused persons are still at large.
Ngwenya appealed to members of the public who may have any information about the whereabouts of the accused persons, to immediately report to the nearest police station.