By Tamuka Maregere
As the country declares war on poaching, seven Zimbabwe national park rangers have appeared in court for allegedly killing four kudus at the Gonarezhou game reserve.
The seven, Alfonse Mudzi (51), Livison Masendeke (29) Joshua Madziva (33) Kudzaishe Macharaga (37) Orus Moyo (30) Trynos Sibanda (29) and Johnson Manyakara (32) pleaded guilty before Masvingo magistrate Lyn Manyika.
The seven were remanded in custody until November 21.
Prosecutor Makaita Chikamhi told the court that police heard the group was selling kudu meat in Tshovani, Chiredzi in October. A trap was set with the help of Avison Mpofu, the area manager of Chipinda Pools and Phahlela Makundo, a senior ranger responsible for operations at Gonarezhou. The seven rangers were sent on a week-long patrol along the Zimbabwe- Mozambique border, armed with AK47 rifles.
On the third day, the investigators heard several gunshots in the direction of patrol route. They then laid an ambush and arrested the group.