A Harare taxi driver is lucky to be alive after three men who had hired him from Harareâ€™s Strathaven attacked him before robbing his vehicle which was later recovered in Westwood after it had been stripped.
The incident occurred on the early morning of Saturday when the taxi driver was hired by three suspected robbers who were masquerading as genuine passengers.
According to the taxi driver, Mr Bernard Mahlengeza, the three suspected robbers are alleged to have misled him into believing that they wanted to be taken to Warren Park.
However along the way, the robbers attacked him.
Mahlengeza had to escape from the moving vehicle and sustained injuries.
â€œI was hired by three young men from Londoner Bar and they wanted to be taken to Warren Park. Along the way, the other guy who was sitting behind the driverâ€™s seat used a rope to tie my neck whilst the other one started hitting me with a bottle. I however managed to escape and was assisted by the other taxi which was following behind us. However we lost track of them and then reported the matter to the police,â€ said Mahlengeza.
The taxi operator, Mr Brian Mberengo said the vehicle was later recovered in Westhood after it had been stripped.
â€œMy vehicle was stripped and they tried to burn the body but they failed,â€ he added.
Harare Police Provincial Spokesperson, Inspector James Sabau confirmed the robbery, adding that such incidents have increased lately.
He attributed the rise in such crimes to the release of 89 robbers and suspected robbers from prison between January and February this year and urged motorists to desist from picking up strangers.
â€œWe are saying about 89 bank robbers were realised from prison since January because they had completed their terms and others are out on bail. However for our drivers to continue picking and dropping passengers it has become risky as they are on the prowl,â€ said Inspector Sabau.
Most notorious robbers in Zimbabwe are those who would have been released either from remand prison or those who would have served their sentences.
The infamous Stephen Chidhumo, Edgar Masendeke, Norman Karimanzira and Gift Tyres all gained their notoriety after being granted bail by the countryâ€™s courts.