MASVINGO - Police officers from the district anti-stock-theft unit have urged people to embrace the use of branding irons, which include detachable iron cast alphabets, to limit stock theft cases in the province.
Speaking at a meeting between Montana Carswell Meats (MC Meats) and its producers last week, Constable Winston Mabeka from the Business Against Stock Theft (BAST) forum, pleaded with the farmers to use branding irons saying it is for their own good.
"We all know that Masvingo has high rates of stock-theft and using branding irons can be a panacea to this ongoing theft crisis. Branding helps to search the owners of the beasts and by doing so, we will not have stray animals," he said.
Branding is done in three categories namely provincial, district and personal branding.
To brand livestock, an application has to be done to the Provincial Administrator (PA) and District Administrator (DA).
Constable Mabeka said it is important to have all three brands per livestock.
"Having all the three brands per livestock is advisable. When we want to know the owner of a beast, we first check the provincial brand, the district brand and finally the personal brand and this perfects the owner of the beast," Mabeka said.
This comes after the idea by police national anti-stock-theft co-ordinator, Assistant Commissioner Erasmus Makodza, who in August this year said people should brand their livestock as proposed by law enforcers to fight stock-theft.news