PRESIDENTIAL spokesperson George Charamba has dismissed as blatantly false the reports that a soldier who went rogue and was killed while on a robbery spree has been buried with full military honours.
21-year-old Tariro Gora, a soldier at One Commando Barracks in Harare, was one of three armed robbers that were killed in a fiery shoot-out at the residence of ex-detective Joseph Nemaisa in Harare early this month. Another rogue soldier, Wirimai Nyandoro (37) of Zimbabwe National Army 1 Commando regiment fled the scene with another accomplice and was subsequently arrested by the police.
However, members of the public expressed of outrage and indignation when images were shared on social media of army pall bearers with a coffin which was claimed to be that of Tariro Gora.
Charamba said any uniformed officer who dies in disgraceful circumstances is not accorded military burial, and for the record, the bodies of both the soldiers killed while robbing a Chadcombe home were yet to be buried as investigations are ongoing.
Charamba warned some Zimbabweans against peddling falsehoods against the military, using some rogue elements gunned down in a Harare suburb after an attempted armed robbery.
He said the image circulating on social media was a file tape culled from the past and was for an unrelated burial of a member of the armed forces.
“For the record, the remains of two rogue soldiers who were gunned down in a failed armed robbery case are yet to be buried, with their remains still in a local mortuary until investigations are completed,” Charamba clarified.
“Again for the record, a serving member of the Army who dies in dishonourable circumstances is never accorded military honours. His death is demeaningly treated as an unheroic suicide, whereupon the military merely provides a coffin, and a chaplain to deliver the body to the family of the dead soldier.”
Charamba said Government is “taking the war to any such rogue elements” who turn into a life of robbery and murder, saying that all of them “are fated to fall by the sword”.
“We will go toe to toe with robbers who use weapons of war. Watch this space!”