THE police in Tarime have tasked local government leaders to inform them of rustlers and bandits in the district.
Speaking recently, Tarime/Rorya Special Police Zone Commander Henry Mwaibambe told reporters in Tarime that one of the challenges facing the two districts of Tarime and Rorya was lack of cooperation from local government leaders.
He said the majority were reluctant to tip them off about the identities and whereabouts of rustlers and bandits.
“Preliminary findings on recent investigations conducted by our detectives, especially in the villages that border the neighbouring Kenya, show that dangerous cross-border criminals dine, drink and dance with the residents and later commit various crimes,” RPC Mwaibambe said.
The zonal police boss noted that as of now several suspected criminals, including a number of village chairpersons, were being held for interrogation in connection with an increase in the number of rustling cases taking place in the two districts.
The commander did not reveal the identities of the suspects, saying investigations were still going on. He however, commended lawabiding citizens, who were cooperating with law enforcers to contain crime in their areas.
Mr Mwaibambe noted that the police were also collaborating with Kenyan security organs and shared information on the rustlers and bandits wreaking havoc on the two districts.
“A special anti-rustling department was formed a few months after the introduction of the Tarime/Rorya Police Zone to collaborate with the neighbouring Kenyan police to curb cross-border rustling, while maintaining regular patrols at the border,” said Mr Mwaibambe.
He noted that over the past three months the police had recovered 2,560 heads of cattle that had been stolen and several suspects were held and taken to court and at least two illegal guns and over 2,000 rounds of ammunition were also impounded.
Last week, the police in Tarime apprehended the most wanted armed robbery and suspected rustler involved in various criminal incidents taking place in the region.
According to the Zonal RPC, the suspect is identified as Mwita Marwa alias Otieno, from Kitenga Village in Tarime District and was arrested in Shinyanga Region as he was trying to escape.
He noted that all local leaders were directed to hold a secret ballot in their areas to help villagers identify those involved in criminal incidents.
‘ ’The secret ballot will help villagers identify individuals involved in criminal incidents such as banditry, rustling and burglary and enable law enforcers to investigate and take to court the culprits,” he noted.