The newly established Stock Theft Unit says Gaborone residents and surrounding areas are consuming most of the stolen meat, which they buy from well-known butcheries.
The Unit says so far they have red marked about five big butcheries.
Speaking to The Telegraph this week, the head of the Stock Theft Unit in Number 14 District, inspector Silingiwe Maposa, said as the unit, they “have so far established that most of the meat that is bought from butcheries by the customers in Gaborone and surrounding areas is stolen meat”.
He said the black market has been there for a very long time even before the unit was established.
Maposa said they have red marked about five big butcheries within Gaborone and surrounding areas that are selling stolen meat at a very high rate.
He added that most of the cattle that are stolen are often slaughtered and taken to the butcheries.
“Soon the unit will in embark on raids of butcheries that are selling stolen meat,” he said, adding that they have identified some criminal syndicates that are dealing in stolen cattle.
He said the Unit had busted some organized criminal syndicates, although there are still some that have not yet been arrested.
He appealed to members of the public to be vigilant when they buy meat and pointed out that cattle owners should always visit the cattle post and check on their beasts.
Joseph Seitshiro, a butchery owner in Tlokweng Village near Gaborone said, “Yes, it is true that some people are involved in cattle theft and sometimes those thugs try to sell the meat to us as butchery owners.”
He said the best way to deal with such people is for butchery owners to always verify and demand brand certificates even if the person is your main supplier.
Some Gaborone residents interviewed randomly told this paper that it is an embarrassment that most of the meat consumed in Gaborone and surrounding areas is from stolen cattle.
They said those butcheries that are suspected to be dealing in stolen meat should be closed down and the public should be told about such butcheries.