POLICE IN RUHANGO District, Southern Province, is looking for two men who shot dead a Banque Populaire du Rwanda (BPR) employee and took off with millions of cash on Tuesday night.
The suspects, who were armed with an AK-47 sub-machine gun, walked into the branch of BPR in Buhanda, Kinihira Sector, at around 7.30 pm and confronted two employees of the bank, according to Police.
The assailants, then, instructed a cashier to give them money but he was shot dead when he attempted to lock them behind, according to eyewitnesses. The victim was identified as Frederic Twagiramungu.
Preliminary investigations indicate that after shooting the cashier, they held the bank’s branch manager at gunpoint before walking away with about Rwf 4.6 million in cash.
Police is yet to identify the suspects but the Southern Region Police spokesperson Chief Superintendent Hubert Gashagaza told The New Times that efforts are being made to apprehend the robbers to face justice.
Gashagaza called upon the population to cooperate with investigators so as to ensure that the suspects are arrested.
“People should always endeavour to cooperate with the Police and give information on any suspicious movement or individuals so as to prevent such crimes from taking place,” CSP Gashagaza said.
He also urged any individual who might still have arms illegally to hand them over to the Police.
The bank’s branch was yesterday closed to pave way for smooth investigations.
The inside counter protective glasses were smashed.
Witnesses at the scene yesterday said they heard “several shots” being fired.
Francoise Mukantaganda, who lives a few metres from the bank, said she heard “several shots” being fired inside and outside the bank.
Mukantaganda said when the attack occurred she was at her home preparing dinner.
“I heard huge bangs. At first I could not identify what they were and where they were coming from,” she narrated.
But later, she said, she heard someone calling for help. And, as area residents gathered outside the bank one of the assailants walked out with a gun.
“Everyone ran away and I heard about five bullets being fired,” Mukantaganda said.
Ruhango District Mayor, Franxois Xavier Mbabazi, yesterday morning held a security meeting with residents and urged them to intensify night patrols and cooperate with security organs in the efforts to apprehend the suspects.
The incident comes months after Police had, in April, foiled an attempted robbery at Kibirizi sub-branch of the Banque Populaire du Rwanda in the rural Kibirizi sector of Nyanza District. Four people were arrested then.
In December last year, a cashier at Musange Savings and Credit Cooperative (SACCO), Nyamagabe District, was shot dead by armed robbers who also took with them over Rwf800,000 but failed to open the safe-deposit box.