The bandits, who were riding on a motorcycle, were cornered at the junction of Nelson Mandela Expressway and Nyerere Road near the 'Daily News' offices, after a dramatic chase all the way from Buguruni Malapa.
Passers-by and people in the area were jolted by gunshots as the police opened fire in the arrest attempt. The armed robbers reportedly made away with an unspecified amount of cash from LakeOil Filling station at Buguruni Malapa before the confrontation with the police who had probably acted on a tip.
On reaching the Mandela/Nelson roads’ junction, the bandits tossed the money on the street in an attempt to foil the police operatives in pursuit of them. It did not help much as the police, who were joined by their colleagues on various security postings in the area, finally caught up with them, despite the fact that their decision to throw away the cash almost confused the police as people rushed to get hold of the money.
An eye witness told the ‘Daily News’; that the bandit’s action to throw away the money almost rendered the police unable to identify the real bandits from members of the public who were busy picking up the loot. He said during the moment of confusion, the robbers hopped into a stationary pick-up vehicle and forced its driver to take off.
"The pick-up driver seemed perplexed as he was forced to take off at gunpoint and when he hesitated more, the robbers shot him," he explained. There were cases of mistaken identities too as a street CD (compact disk) hawker who was aboard the vehicle started running towards Temeke Veterinary Area after which police started chasing him mistaking him to be among the robbers.
Police officers in four motorbikes chased the hawker to the Veterinary market, while firing bullets in the air, before they realized he was just a petty trader operating at the usual busy junction of the roads leading to the port of Dar es Salaam and Julius Nyerere International Airport. After a short time, however, the police managed to arrest two of the suspected bandits, one said to be armed.
Three robbers are believed to have taken part in the robbery. A police officer speaking on condition of anonymity confirmed that they managed to arrest two robbers but one of them escaped.
The Ilala Regional Police Commander, Marietha Minangi, confirmed the incident, noting, however, that more information on the robbery incident will be availed to the public today. The amount of cash stolen could not be immediately stated.