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Game rancher assaulted

Munyaradzi Wasosa

SUSPECTED war veterans brutally assaulted the farm manager of Masapas Game Ranch in the Save Valley Conservancy last Friday, the Zimbabwe Independent has been told.

>Police in Triangle have since arrested 33 people in connection with the attack on Anthony Bodington and six game scouts on Masapas Ranch.

Triangle police confirmed the arrests but referred all questions to the officer-in-charge of Mkwasine police, Inspector Charles Munhungeyi.

Efforts to contact Munhungeyi were fruitless. He was said to be attending a soccer match in Chiredzi.

The Independent understands the attack was carried out by a group of war veterans, poachers and people illegally occupying part of the ranch.

A reliable source said the incident happened while Bodington and his team were patrolling the ranch.

“Bodington and the scouts were on a routine joint anti-poaching patrol with workers from Humani and Senuko game ranches when the assailants fell upon them,” the source said.

The farm is owned by Lowveld game rancher, Peter Henning.

One game scout was allegedly stabbed by one of the assailants after they were abducted and held overnight in the bush.

The Independent understands that a man only identified as Chirapa, who led the group, is under investigation for an assault allegedly committed against one of the ranch’s managers in 2002.

The assailants were said to be armed with knobkerries, assegais and machetes.

A ZRP Support Unit team rescued the abductees in the early hours of Saturday morning.

The assault victims, who sustained severe injuries and lacerations all over their bodies, were taken to Triangle hospital for treatment.

One senior nurse at the hospital who preferred not to be named confirmed that Bodington sustained serious injuries.

“Mr Bodington came in on Saturday and we treated him for severe injuries he had all over his body as a result of the beating,” the nurse said.

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