Hooli­gans’ rin­gleader in the dock

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Mashudu Net­sianda

A PO­LICE of­fi­cer who ap­pre­hended a High­landers Foot­ball Club fan in re­cent skir­mishes that erupted at Bar­bour­fields Sta­dium yes­ter­day claimed that the ac­cused was the chief ar­chi­tect of the vi­o­lence.

The vi­o­lence started at the end of a Pre­mier­ship match, a 1-1 stale­mate, pit­ting High­landers FC and Chicken Inn.

Never Nx­u­malo (25) of Njube sub­urb ap­peared be­fore Bu­l­awayo mag­is­trate Mrs Ade­laide Mbeure fac­ing charges of caus­ing dis­or­der in a public place.

Con­sta­ble Em­manuel Taruvinga who ap­pre­hended Nx­u­malo as he was re­sist­ing ar­rest after jump­ing onto the pitch said the foot­ball fan sparked out­rage from other High­landers fans.

“The ac­cused jumped into the pitch and when we ap­pre­hended him that is when other fans started throw­ing mis­siles at us and there was vi­o­lence. It is clear from the way other fans re­acted that Nx­u­malo was the ring leader who sparked the vi­o­lence,” said Const Taruvinga dur­ing trial.

The trial con­tin­ues to­day and an­other cop is ex­pected to tes­tify.

Pros­e­cut­ing, Miss Caro­line Matanga said on Au­gust 14 shortly after 4.45PM, Nx­u­malo un­law­fully en­tered the pitch after the match.

The court heard that As­sis­tant Velile Zele and Const Taruvinga ap­pre­hended him, spark­ing out­rage from other High­landers fans.

Hooli­gans started throw­ing mis­siles at the two cops be­fore they in­vaded the pitch and po­lice set a dog on the rowdy fans while beat­ing them with trun­cheons at the same time.

“When As­sis­tant Zele and Con­sta­ble Taruvinga ar­rested Nx­u­malo, High­landers fans started throw­ing mis­siles which were di­rected at the two po­lice of­fi­cers be­fore they in­vaded the pitch and en­gaged in acts of vi­o­lence,” said Miss Matanga.

The vi­o­lence was cap­tured by so­cial me­dia users who posted videos and pic­tures on­line.

In one of the videos, po­lice of­fi­cers are seen re­treat­ing from charg­ing hooli­gans who are car­ry­ing all sorts of weapons.

In an­other one, an uniden­ti­fied man is seen sav­agely as­sault­ing a po­lice­man us­ing a po­lice shield.

In the video, the po­lice of­fi­cer is hap­lessly ly­ing on the ground with one of his shoes re­moved.

Never Nx­u­malo

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