Kombi school pupils’ kidnap: 60-year old man arrested

Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi
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Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) has confirmed the arrest of Samuel Honde (60) for the alleged kidnapping of 25 learners from David Livingstone Primary School.

In a statement, the ZRP said Honde was apprehended at the 103-kilometer peg along the Harare-Mutare Road in Macheke following a tip-off from a passer-by who spotted his suspicious behavior.

“The arrest follows a tip-off received by ZRP Macheke from a passer-by that there was a Nissan Caravan kombi registration number, AFN 0198, with children on board parked by the road side.

“The informant suspected foul play as some of the children were crying,”read the statement.

According to the authorities, investigations by the Police established that the suspect had parked the vehicle after it had ran out of fuel.

“It was established that the suspect was contracted by various parents, since 2016, to ferry learners to and from David Livingstone Primary School to their homes in greater Harare.”

Circumstances are that, on 18th January 2024 at around 1300 hours, the suspect picked 25 learners, 14 girls and 11 boys at the school and drove towards Macheke instead of driving the pupils to their respective homes in Kuwadzana and surrounding areas.

The learners have since been reunited with their parents after they were referred to Marondera Provincial Hospital for medical examination.

The police have since said investigations are in progress to establish the motive behind the kidnapping.

The Zimbabwe Republic Police warns parents and guardians to ensure their representatives are present as children are picked to and from school by contracted transporters.

The representatives will assist to monitor the movement of the hired transporters.