By Sij Ncube
Harare, August 24, 2016 – PROTESTERS Wednesday raided Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko supermarket in Harare along Nelson Mandela Avenues, looting thousands of dollars worth of groceries as demonstrations again hit the capital for the umpteenth time.
RadioVOP witnessed youths smashing windows at the supermarket forcing frightened employees to scurry for cover inside the premises.
With workers out of site, the marauding youths, brandishing bricks and stones, stormed into the unguarded premises and emerged with beer, whiskies, brands and other alcoholic beverages.
Riot police fired teargas canisters to disperse the looters but the melee caught lunchtime shoppers unawares as they were forced to scramble for cover in nearby shops and other business premises.
Mphoko has angered some Zimbabweans through his long stay at Rainbow Hotel at tax payers’ expense. He has since vacated the hotel.
Two months ago protestors staged another demonstration inside the hotel lobby demanding that he vacates the hotel.
Independent news outlets have been awash with reports that Mphoko has gobbled hundreds of thousands in scarce dollars through his hotel stay while refusing to move to a government issued house.
The Harare CBD was a sea of grey and blue as anti-riot police descended on Nelson Mandela in search of the looters some of whom had melted into the crowds.
“The cat and mouse game with the police has been going on since around 9am. The protestors took advantage of the brief absence of police outside the supermarket to break into the premises and loot,” said a worker at a tyre business next to Choppies.
“It is not safe; we are being choked by tear gas,” he added, pleading not to be identified. Apparently it appeared to be a very busy day for the police who also had to battle with a demonstration outside BancABC as disgruntled workers protested over retrenchments at the financial institution along Samora Machel Avenue.”
As if that was not enough, the riot police had to contend with another demonstration outside MDC-T headquarters. RadioVOP could not immediately verify the number of people arrested over thedemonstrations.