Eight Harare City Council municipal police officers have been suspended pending disciplinary hearings over allegations of extorting money from motorists arrested over traffic offences.

The accused officers allegedly demanded money from motorists and promised to drop the charges against them.

In a statement, Harare City Council spokesperson, Mr Stanley Gama, said the council would take disciplinary action against any officer found guilty.

“The City of Harare has noted with concern the serious excesses and unprofessional behavior by some elements within the Municipal Police, some of which have been captured on various media platforms.

“The matter is currently being taken up by City Mayor Jacob Mafume and City Clerk Engineer Hosia Chisango and appropriate action will be taken.

“Some municipal traffic police officers are terrorizing residents by extorting money from motorists under the guise of arresting them for traffic violations. Victims are subjected to all kinds of intimidation until they give up their money,” Mr. Jama said.

Residents must report any cases of criminal activity to the municipal police.

“This is a serious crime and in the last few weeks the city has been investigating the illegality
Activities carried out by these rogue elements within the municipal police. The city council assures residents that it is taking the necessary measures to put an end to this matter.

“To this end, the city administration has collected evidence of illegal practices against at least eight officers who have since been suspended while investigations continue. Some of them were identified by victims at the military parade. They will be subject to regular disciplinary hearings.”

“In order to root out these rogue elements, the city council has since appointed an anti-corruption team that will respond to and investigate such reports quickly,” Mr Gama said.

“The team will also carry out operations to catch criminals red-handed. Members of the public and business community who encounter suspicious requests from municipal police officers or council staff should report such issues to the Acting Chief of Investigations, Harare Metropolitan Police on 0773390787 or 0242751820.

“The city is also making sure that municipal employees have name tags so residents can easily identify them.” Announce

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