By Musa Nhleko
Game rangers at Mkhaya Nature Reserve yesterday shot four armed poachers and one died after a shootout.
Two of the poachers are said to be admitted at the Siteki Good Shepherd Hospital while one was treated and discharged.
The deceased was part of seven poachers had trespassed into Mkhaya Nature Reserve.
Visitors who occupied one of the campsites heard gunshots before dawn. The campers are said to have alerted game rangers of the suspected intruders and the sound of gunfire they had heard.
Acting on the tip off, the rangers went to investigate and the suspicions were confirmed when they met seven poachers inside the game reserve.
It has been alleged that the poachers opened fire when they were ordered by the game rangers to stop.
“They tried to tell the poachers to surrender but the instruction fell on deaf ears as the poachers fired at the rangers and then there was a shootout in which the poachers were injured,” said a source close to the matter.
Sources said the four poachers were shot as they fled the game reserve leaving behind game they had killed.
Parked nearby was a vehicle, so far only identified as a Toyota bakkie, which they used as a getaway vehicle. One of the poachers who was shot was carried to the van as they escaped. More....