FOUR warders from Mbigiri Prison in Mvomero district, Morogoro region are being held by police for allegedly being involved in the murder of a pastoralist. It is alleged that the warders killed Repeti Mandero (20) after he grazed his livestock in a sugar cane farm in Mbigiri Mkulanzi.
Morogoro Regional Police Commander (RPC), Wilbroad Mutafungwa said that the incident occurred on March 27, in Mvomero district at Mbigiri sugar cane farm owned by the Prison Department.
He named the warders who were being held at Mvomero police station as A6106 Staff Sargent Roman, B6064, Corporal Barnabas, D6942 warden Albert and D8796 warden Tatususi. Commander Mutafungwa affirmed that a file case of the murder is already opened, adding that a total of 236 cows have been seized and kept at Mbigiri prison’s grounds.
He said that the incident took place after the warders were notified that livestock were grazed inside the prison’s sugar cane farm, before they managed to locate two groups of cattle being grazed by Maasai herdsmen.
“After finding these groups, the warders decided to take them inside the prison grounds so that other legal steps could be taken. But during the process, a group of Maasai men armed with weapons emerged and managed to take with them one herd of cattle,” he explained.
However, when the wardens tried to bring back the herd, the Maasai herdsmen attacked them with arrows and clubs, a situation that forced the warders to protect themselves by firing shots into the air to try and save their lives, he added.
“During the commotion, a stray bullet killed one of the herdsmen,” claimed commander Mutafungwa, adding, “The man was rushed to the hospital, though efforts to save his life were in vain as he died on the way to the hospital and his body was preserved at the Morogoro Regional Referral Hospital mortuary.”
He requested family members of the deceased to remain calm while the police continue with investigations and once complete the offenders will be sent to court and respond to charges they might face.