By Judith Sibanda
Police in Victoria Falls has launched a manhunt for a convicted Zambian sugar smuggler who escaped in unclear circumstances on Wednesday afternoon while being escorted to the prison cells.
The man identified as Rodene Chifuwe reportedly escaped while he was being escorted to the police holding cells at the Victoria Falls police station in the company of other prisoners.
Police took to social media to appeal to the public to report if they come across a “dark in complexion slightly tall Chifuwe in white prison shorts and topless.”
According to an eye witness account, Chifuwe untied his handcuffs with an unknown object and took off through the court’s main gate just after 4 PM.
“They were being escorted to the police cells, about eight or so of them and when they had just passed the old prosecutor’s offices, he untied his handcuffs and threw them down as he started to run a fast pace through the gate,” said the source
“He also removed his prison shirt near the gate and dumped it there and was seen crossing the Bulawayo-Victoria Falls road running towards Chorgam park. Security officers tried to follow him, but it seems it was too late because he disappeared from there and up to now, he has not been apprehended.”
Chifuwe had been serving his six-month jail term for smuggling large amounts of sugar from Zambia.
“He had been on trial following his arrest last month. He was arrested in a nearby bush carrying 25×10 2KGs of brown sugar which he could not account for,” said Onias Nyathi, the state prosecutor.
Matabeleland North police spokesperson could not be reached for comment as her mobile went unanswered.