MUTASA SOUTH: An artisanal miner Wednesday drowned in Mutare River while fleeing from police officers who were in hot pursuit.
This was after police had raided a site in which the illegal miner and his colleagues were panning for gold.
Manicaland province deputy police spokesperson, Assistant Inspector Luxson Chananda said the incident happened along Mutare River at Plot 1 Premier Central in Penhalonga Wednesday night.
The police spokesperson said on the fateful day, the now deceased Tinashe Dukuta, 26, was in the company of two unidentified friends while panning for gold along Mutare River.
Police swooped on the gold panners and the trio ran away with the police in hot pursuit.
“Police conducted a raid and the deceased and his friends escaped.They jumped into the river as an escape route,” said Chananda.
The deceased’s body was found floating by Byron Makunde, 17, of Premier Central, Penhalonga after he had gone to install his water pump the next morning.
He made a report at Penhalonga police station who attended the scene. They inspected the body but found no injuries and ferried it to Mutare Provincial Hospital for a postmortem.
“As police, we urge members of the public not to undertake illegal mining activities but to use proper channels of accessing mining permits,” said Chananda.