Chinese couple fobs off violent robbers
TARGET: Francistown mall housing Chinese shops

A Francistwn Chinese couple narrowly escaped death on Monday evening, when two heavily built criminals pounced on them at the close of business.

A normal day of business at North Gate mall turned ugly as the couple was about to lock their shop doors to head home.

“Äs soon as my wife opned the door for us to get out, two heavily built men quickly and forcibly pushed both of us back into the shop. Immediately, the men started to fight me”, narrated the shop owner popularly known as Gao.

Armed with a huge metal chain and two padlocks meant to chain up the shop doors, the 45- year -old Asian man galantly fought back the intruders.

“Ï don’t know what they wanted. Probably they wanted cash but they didn’t say. Instead they fought me. In defence I hit them back with this big chain, “continued Gao whose forehead and chin have been stitched and bandaged.

While Gao wrestled with the thugs, his wife used the metal chair to help her husband by hitting the thugs.

“One of them stabbed me with a sharp object, which I suspect to be a knife. I didn’t see it but I think it was a knife. At the hospital the two cuts were stitched. Twelve stitches on the chin and two on the forehead”, Gao further narrated.

As the fight attracted scores of curious onlookers, the criminals quickly disappeared into dark deserted corridors of the mall.

Cagey and cautious to keep his identity a secret and to avoid his picture splashed all over the newspaper, the usually jovial businessman refused to be photographed.

“It’s not safe for me and my business. I have accepted and gotten over the nasty incident. Life goes on,” he explained to the journalist who had visited him at his shop.

Although it was business as usual at the mall on Tuesday morning, the shop employees were rather apprehensive and on high alert.

Meanwhile, Francistown Police Station commander, Assistant Superitendent Lebang Maniki confirmed the incident and urged the business community to be vigilant at all times.

“We are still investigating the incident. The motive of the intruders is unknown and no arrests have been made so far. I believe it was an attempted robbery. No cash or valuables were taken. However, I am appealing to anyone with information on the suspected robbers to come forward”, said Maniki.

The top cop called on the business community to join hands with the police in establishing crime prevention committees.

“Business premesis should also engage security guards to do surveillance. Business owners should leave their business premises as a group at the same time with their employees, they should avoid staying behind alone at the end of business hours and knocking off late,” Maniki cautioned.

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