ZNA Dismisses Reports That Its Guns Were Recovered In The Hands Of Poachers
25 April 2019
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The Zimbabwe National Army yesterday dismissed as false a story in a local newspaper alleging that poachers who were recently cornered in Bubye Valley Conservancy in Beitbridge had abandoned their AK47 assault rifle.

Investigations carried out revealed that the weapon in question was a 303 rifle and not an AK47 rifle.

In a statement, ZNA director public relations Lieutenant-Colonel Alphios Makotore urged the media to verify with the army before publishing any story relating to them.

“The organisation would like to put the record straight that the aforementioned rifle does not belong to the Zimbabwe National Army. It has since been established from police records that the weapon in question is actually a 303 rifle whose serial number is L9422 and not an AK47 rifle as reported in the media.

“The ZNA appeals to news organisations to verify with the organisation when they have stories of that nature as failure to do so leads to misinformation which in turn damages the image and reputation of the army,” he said.

He said the story was published in the NewsDay edition of April 22, 2019 with the headline, “Military rifle recovered from poachers”, and was followed up with an editorial comment titled, “Military must help protect our wildlife”.’

The story quoted some “Beitbridge police sources close to the investigations” alleging that they had told them that they were following up a case where poachers abandoned a military rifle and a bag with clothes.