Bizarre break in at Mines Ministry

Bizarre break in at Mines Ministry

MASERU – In what appears to be a bizarre incident burglars broke into the Ministry of Mining offices on Tuesday but left diamonds in a safe they had managed to open.
Sources told thepost that the suspects broke into the Mining Ministry, opposite the police headquarters, on Tuesday night and damaged two safes that contained diamonds and documents.
A source said it appears that the burglars used a grinder to open the safes.

The Director of Geo Science at the ministry, Pius Ngakane, confirmed the incident last night before going to print.
“The case is now in the hands of police. And so far there is nothing that we can say. We cannot say what has been stolen,” Ngakane said.
He said they are also conducting their own investigations.

Police spokesperson Superintendent Mpiti Mopeli did not have details of the case.
“I am out of the office now and I do not have details of the case,” Supt Mopeli said.
The source further said five pump action rifles and their bullets that were kept in the offices have not been stolen.
“Pump action bullets were many in the robbed offices but it appears they have not been stolen,” the source added.

So it is not clear what the motive of the house-breaking was because the diamonds worth approximately M4.8 million have not been stolen.
There were 22 diamonds in all making approximately 283 carats kept in the two safes.

Three office doors were broken including the one with burglar- proof in which the diamonds were kept.
The source said cleaners reported the matter to their bosses who in turn took the matter to the police.
“Maybe the people have stolen import permits but we do not know,” the source said.

Import permits are used to export diamond outside the country.
Commissioner of Mines Pheello Tjatja is part of the Prime Minister Thomas Thabane’s delegation to Canada. The Minister of Mining, Temeki Tšolo, is also in Canada.
“Maybe when Tjatja is back he could tell what is missing in his department because so far nothing could be seen,” the sources said.
Security guards at the ministry have been on strike for the past five months.

Majara Molupe

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