Written and compiled by Tracey Conway-Burns

April 2023

“We cannot with safety swerve from principle, we cannot violate justice, we cannot neglect mercy.” By Ellen G. White

With the continual theft of ZESA cables, now the intermittent internet, my updates are back to being done every quarter.


As per my previous update, I really think people should look at placing Solar Power into their homes.

But doing this, as stressed before, ensure you have someone reliable, not just a mate or a name that people “fling” around.  There are far too many fly by night suppliers and installers.  Find out the installers background, and check with other customers, how happy they are with the backup service and the correct system that they requested or were informed what to get.  Never be shy to ask questions and if you don’t understand the whole jargon of electricity, speak to a qualified electrician who can advise on what can be loaded onto various systems.


  1. There was a customer who had a small set up installed due to finances. When she asked for more panels, and having dealt with the installer, she gave them money upfront for a few more panels.  Sadly that installer, from Harare, who had advertised on Facebook, took off with her monies not to be seen again!  With so many people asking for cash up front for various reasons, again one must be certain before handing out their hard earned cash.
  2. Solar Equipment Stolen – Having said the above, ensure you have all items like solar panels, with theft proof catches, inverters and batteries in a very secure place, as the criminals are not shy to break into garages, small rooms where the items are being stored and connected.
  3. Generators stolen – due to the continued problem with ZESA outages, theft etc, criminals also resort to stealing huge generators, carrying them out of pedestrian gates etc.  Ensure these are placed securely, even if outside, have a cage, or the generator chain to the wall with very thick chain.
  4. Home robberies – these are on the increase, with people waking up finding their cell phones, lap tops and cash stolen, even from beside their beds, NOT hearing a thing.


Ensure the following:

  1. Talk to family about a plan in place for everyone to follow.  IE if everyone in the lounge, the rest of the house must have the windows closed.
  2. All must know which room is the “safe room” so everyone can dash there calmly and quietly when instructed or if they hear something.  That safe room usually should be a bathroom with a lockable lock, drinking water and even biscuits hidden inside a cupboard for small kids.  Ensure someone brings a cell phone to use to phone for assistance.
  3. The criminals use coolant to knock you out by spraying through open windows – it has an ether base.  If you wake up with a headache you were definitely sprayed!! And be thankful you did not wake up as you do not want to deal with aggressive criminals.
  4. Most houses have 8mm round bar for their burglar bars, upgrade and get thicker bars.
  5. There are so many different set ups with some PRI on double AA batteries that you can place anywhere and use a remote, which is good for areas that have not been alarmed before.  Check out security shops and online security.  A lot are using solar alarms too, which really help.


I am really distressed with parents who leave their children in cars outside shopping centres, saying they will be quick.  This is unacceptable, as people are desperate in so many ways in Zimbabwe.  Wake Up parents:

  • Cars are stolen or hijacked – how would you like the car to go with your child/ren in it.  THINK.  This has happened before in Bulawayo!
  • There are many people who abduct children and it is happening here a great deal, particularly from  high density suburbs and rural lands, creeping into town centres, so be aware all the time.
  • Make sure your child playing in the yard does not scream all the time, as screaming should only be for when they are being attacked or biten, and make neighbours aware that something is wrong, so they can assist.
  • Shopping with children, buy a harness for toddlers which are kept tightly in your hand – NOT attached to a trolley.
  • Teach your children to link arms with one another, forming a chain with you as its pivot, to stay close and not to spread out at arm’s length.
  • Don’t keep your purse or handbag tucked into your baby’s pushchair, and keep baby and vehicle within arm’s length at all times when placing them into their car seats.
  • It seems that many parents are forgetting to advise their children – Never to talk to strangers. Do not take sweets from strangers. YOU MUST start again on advising your child of these simple rules.


Crime Awareness is into its 20th year of operation in Bulawayo and I am into my 24th year since being involved with the Anti Hijack Trust in Harare.  Years of experience and I have managed to guide a number of people around Zimbabwe into operating business-like affairs in conjunction with Neighbourhood Watch, patrols etc.

I do not charge for counseling victims – they are survivors in my eyes – so naturally I still need a great deal of donations and support from the communities that I hold dear to my heart.


If any company or individual wants to donate something towards Crime Awareness Bulawayo, please do not hesitate to contact me. 

Please assist where possible

  • Stationery – new printer cartridges for Canon being black 512 and colour 513, and any other stationery – especially as I need to print out my updates and have hard copies!
  • Payment for ADSL


I have the following companies and individuals to thank for donations and services already received this year and going to continue: 


Mine Machines

Toyota Bulawayo


All the people who give me words of encouragement and support THANK YOU.


Crime Awareness Tracey Conway-Burns BULAWAYO direct:  0712-701 323

EMRAS  (Emergency Ambulance Services) in Bulawayo: 029-2262611

MARS (Medical Air Rescue Services Ambulance) in Bulawayo: 029 – 2264082


24 Hour Instant Hijack Reaction Team in Bulawayo: 029-2885479 (Stops Camp)

CID Central Police Station Bulawayo: 029-2275168 (Wk Hours)

CID Central Police Station Bulawayo: 029-2266306 (24 Hours)

They are fully armed.  Call them if you have been hijacked as soon as physically possible.

24 hour National Complaints Line (024) 2703 631 The following names could have changed:

Help desk – Assistant Inspector Muhondi – (024) 2754333/4

Spokesman – Inspector Chigome – 0782 951 537

Assistant – Sergeant Govere – 0772 969 485

Assistant – Sergeant Phiri – 0777 616 193

If you are unsure that the fine is correct or that the police road block does not meet all the legal requirements, you can call the ZRP hotlines and ask for assistance.

Childline Bulawayo (child abuse, rape etc)  :029-2888891 or (toll free) 2882761

Contact Family Counselling Centre: Help for drug abuse, family abuse, divorced parents etc: (029) 2272400 email:

The Haven Trust (a transitional home for abused women and their children)

No: 029-2242071

Fax No:  029-2286151 Mobile Nos:  0712-231 309 / 0775-174 443

Musasa Project Bulawayo (abused wives and families, rape):029-2880112 or 029-2882888

24 Hour Clinic – Margaran House S. Pairienyatwa between 9th and 8th Avenues.

Tel:  (029) 2881899

Cell: 0712 – 881 439

Know your police station numbers for your area.


Please contact me for any talks for schools, companies, groups or questions on individual security, etc on or cell no: 0712-701 323, for your bookings or questions so that I can place it in my diary.

Please note that anyone who wants to quote in writing any information that I have stated in my updates for the past 16 years, to please verify with me that I will allow you to use it, in case it is a sensitive issue where just a word out of place can result in upsetting individuals and to acknowledge use by placing it under Crime Awareness Bulawayo including any other quotes I have used, to mention them – state it all correctly.

Tracey Conway-Burns – UNQUOTE

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Open chat