Police and vendors fight in Harare

Business momentarily came to a halt in the city centre as police fought running battles with fed-up vendors who are being raided daily by the city authorities and the police in an operation meant to decongest the city.

Police have set up roadblocks on routes leading into the Harare city centre and vendors who ply their trade “illegally” in the streets causing congestion have been the target.

However, with their line of livelihood cut off and only source of income under threat by the current blitz that began just before the festive season vendors are fighting back.

“There was a team of vendors who came running along Nelson Mandela and they threw stones at the Police Post along First Street breaking windows,” said a witness.

Another witness said that a policeman was seriously injured after an attack by the vendors who chased members of the uniformed forces who included soldiers, police officers, prison wardens and also municipal police in Harare’s main street.

Harare Deputy Mayor Emmanuel Chiroto said that the raids on vendors will continue notwithstanding the resistances from vendors.

“The raids on vendors will continue to decongest the city. These vendors used to beat up our officers (Municipal police) and now that they have support of the police (ZRP) they should not be overpowered by the vendors, said Chiroto.

Chiroto added that in order for the operation to succeed the police must first put their house in order.

“However, for this operation to be successful the police must remove the illegal market at charge office,” said Harare Deputy Mayor.

The police are leasing a car park at the Charge office police station to vendors and the Harare Council says it is illegal.

Police spokesperson for Harare Inspector Andrew Sabau confirmed the incident but could not give details.

But they were cries of horror inside the police base as captured vendors were tortured by the police yielding baton sticks.

Meanwhile two journalists from the Daily News who were covering the event have been arrested by the police while their colleagues from the Herald were set free.

Post published in: News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *