Walter Nyamukondiwa, Kariba Bureau
AT least two Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority rangers have gone missing and are feared dead after a tussle with suspected poachers in Lake Kariba.
The rangers who were patrolling the lake had an encounter with an as yet unknown number of poachers believed to be from Zambia and managed to apprehend them.
A tussle later ensued as the rangers were transferring the poachers to Kariba for further handling.
Zimparks spokesperson Mr Tinashe Farawo confirmed the incident adding that investigations into the whereabouts and status were underway.
“I can confirm that our rangers that were on patrol in Lake Kariba are missing after being in contact with suspected poachers.
“The matter is still under investigations and we are working closely with our counterparts in Zambia,” said Mr Farawo.
Reports are that the rangers encountered the poachers and managed to effect an arrest before allegedly taking them to their Changa Camp for safekeeping of their boat as exhibit.
On their way back, it is alleged that the poachers fought the rangers in the middle of the lake on their way to Kariba town and managed to overpower them.
The matter came to light when the rangers’ patrol boat was found floating on the shores of Lake Kariba on the Zambian side with it’s engine removed.
Encounters in Lake Kariba with poachers are on the increase.
Details of what happened and whether the rangers are still alive are still sketchy.