Ward 15 councilor Ashton Mhlanga has encouraged Cowdray Park residents to buy their meat from reputed licensed butcheries rather than backyards, following complaints of individuals selling donkey meat to unsuspecting customers.
This comes after social media has been awash with reports that several donkeys in Cowdray Park have been found slaughtered, with parts like liver removed.
According to the messages, the scrupulous individuals have been selling the donkey meat to locals who reside in new stands in Cowdray Park.
In an interview with CITE, Councilor Mhlanga said although he has not received official complaints from the residents, he is aware of the social media reports.
“I have heard the issue from social media but I have not received official reports from the residents. But my advice to residents in Cowdray Park is that they should buy meat from reputable licensed butcheries,” said the councillor.
Mhlanga said residents have access to a number of official butcheries in the suburb.
“We have many reputable butcheries here. There is one at a shopping centre at Caravan, another one at Athens and another one located at the terminus. Residents should buy their meat there so that they are not in danger of eating donkey meat,” Mhlanga warned,
Bulawayo Provincial Police Spokesperson Inspector Abednico Ncube also confirmed that police had heard of the reports from social media.
“We have not yet received a report that there is donkey meat being sold, but we are seeing it from social media. People should buy meat from reputable butcheries. Buying meat from street hawkers is a crime and the residents will end up consuming meat that died on its own without them having slaughtered it as per their culture,” said the police spokesperson.
Inspector Ncube advised residents that they should also desist from buying meat from hawkers as they will end up buying meat which died from transmissible diseases, which would then affect them as well after eating that contaminated meat.
“Or as the allegations of theft are doing rounds, people will end up eating donkey meat,” he said.
The police spokesperson said residents should take heed of the advice from the police and the city health department.
“We are appealing to the members of the public to listen to the word of advice from the police and city health that only licensed butcheries dealing with meat and have certificates should be used for consumption. We are saying no to meat sold in buckets by people on foot,” said Inspector Ncube.