MASVINGO – The son of a Zanu PF hero is on the run after allegedly stealing 10 beasts from beneficiaries of President Robert Mugabe’s land reform programme.
Assah, the son of the late Alex Mudavanhu, a former war veterans’ boss and Zanu PF Masvingo provincial chairperson, is on the police wanted list and is believed to have skipped the country, a local magistrate heard yesterday.
His alleged accomplice, Watson Chamisa, has appeared before provincial magistrate Oliver Mudzongachiso on stock theft charges.
The magistrate heard the duo would steal cattle from “new farmers” and trade them at different abattoirs in a bid to make a quick buck.
Assah and Chamiso allegedly stole the cattle from different newly-resettled farmers in the Rippling Waters resettlement area, about 50 km east of Masvingo.
They would hide the cattle in the late Mudavanhu’s farm, which is now owned by Assah.
Prosecutor Tafirei Tandirai told the court Assah and Chamisa allegedly stole four cattle from Joseph Chivakire from Chief Charumbira’s area on January 15 this year.
It is also alleged the two then pounced at Chimombe Farm and got away with nine beasts belonging to Chidzeya Mazvidza in the same area between January 31 and February 2 this year.
They allegedly stole three more cattle during the same period from an unnamed farmer and hid the beasts in Swatfontein Conservancy grabbed by Assah’s late father during the recent conservancy invasions.
The total value of the cattle was estimated at $10 000. The court heard Assah and his accomplice would bribe police officers to clear the cattle for sale at an abattoir in the city.
Their luck ran out when one of the owners visited the abattoir and identified his cattle that were about to be slaughtered.
Assah however, escaped and has been on the run leading to police to declare his man hunt.
Chamisa was remanded in custody to May 17. – Godfrey Mtimba