Zim supermarket at centre of storm over ex-newscaster's arrest

2016-08-24 12:21


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Harare - A leading supermarket in Zimbabwe has found itself at the centre of a social media storm over the way it handled the arrest of a former news anchor who was caught shoplifting, but later found to have a mild form of dementia.

Dave Emberton, who was a familiar face to many Zimbabweans from the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation's evening TV news bulletin, was handcuffed after security guards saw that he had not paid for a packet of bacon in a Spar Zimbabwe store in Harare last week. 

Spar Zimbabwe went on to post a video to Facebook, apologising for the incident and saying that externally-contracted security guards at the Letombo store had handled the incident "in not a good way".

In the clip, Spar Zimbabwe's managing director Terrance Yeatman said 68-year-old Emberton had been given lunch by the store. 

UK visa

He went on to appeal for support for the former newscaster, who would like to settle in the UK, but cannot obtain a visa for his Zimbabwean wife.

Many of those who viewed the video were shocked at the obvious frailty of Emberton and felt that filming him in this way was unfair. He'd also been photographed on the day of his arrest, handcuffed and sitting on the floor, clearly confused - though that photo did not come from Spar.

There were also suspicions that a black shoplifter with a similar condition might not have got the same treatment.

"Well done Spar! But somebody is right to wonder aloud if a black man would have gotten similar treatment," reads a post on the Zimbabwe Today FB page. 

"When a white man is reduced to this it is seen as a crisis," a blogger wrote on FB. There were similar comments on Twitter.

The clip is no longer available on Spar Zimbabwe's FB page.

In a piece published by Zimbabwe's Financial Gazette on Monday, Emberton's wife Melody was quoted as saying the British embassy had been in touch following the video.

Emberton only stopped working at ZBC last year and had been with the state broadcaster for more than four decades. 

Read more on:    zimbabwe  |  southern africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.