Gweru residents were yesterday (May 27) left in shock following Permanent Secretary for Information and Publicity Nick Mangwana’s tweet announcing that 18 returnees had escaped quarantine at Mkoba Teacher’s College.
15 males, three females and a minor constitute team of the escaping team.
Investigating how returnees would escape a well mounted quarantine center, CommuTalk established that the returnees did not escape at once but in batches and authorities had concealed the information.
Further investigations through an arranged interview with a detainee who witnessed most of the events also established that three of the run-away returnees were convicts who took advantage of porous security system to escape imprisonment back home.
“There are convicts quarantined here who had left criminal records back home. Seeing a chance for freedom, three of them escaped,” the source said.
Details gathered also show that returnees had devised a way out of the quarantine center by climbing over a tree that hangs out of the security wall.
Nails pinned on the tree trunk supposedly gave the female escapees an easy exit while the branches hanging out close to the security wall had also damaged the razor wire.
The contact further revealed that most returnees had used the ‘now common’ exit passage to go out and return back into the quarantine center.
“People use the exit passage to go in and outside the quarantine center. Some go to buy groceries and back without a hustle. Most people here, seeing how easy it is to escape have always wished they had funds to leave and never come back,” further said the source.
The development comes amid a call to advance security measures at quarantine centers by the Gweru Urban MP; Brian Dube two weeks ago though the Minister of State for Midlands Provincial Affairs; Senator Larry Mavhima had assured security through a statement recorded in media reports.