Bulawayo Residents Warned of Possible Donkey Meat Being Sold as Beef
The discovery of skinned donkey carcasses in Cowdray Park has raised concerns about the authenticity of low-priced “beef” sold on the city’s pavements.
Disturbing images of the donkey carcasses have circulated widely, causing disgust and prompting some individuals to consider adopting a vegetarian lifestyle.
The incident draws parallels to a 2017 incident when the Bulawayo City Council uncovered a homeless man selling dog meat obtained from condemned carcasses found at a municipal dumpsite. The meat, sourced from dogs euthanized by the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), was being sold to unsuspecting residents and restaurant owners.
The recent donkey saga highlights the dangers associated with purchasing meat from unregistered sources. Concerned residents have expressed their dismay and called for intervention from the police. Emanuel Tshuma, a resident of Cowdray Park’s Hlalani Kuhle/Garikai Segment 3, where the donkeys were discovered, stated, “I think the meat that is being sold from houses in the new stands and pavements in town is suspect. The police should intervene.”
The unsettling videos of the slaughtered donkeys have left a lasting impact on residents like Ellen Moyo, who expressed feelings of revulsion and vowed to abstain from consuming red meat. Moyo said, “People are very evil. How can they make us eat donkeys of all things? Maybe we have eaten dogs and other nauseating creatures unknowingly.”
Mkhululi Sibanda, a resident, lamented the potential deception, stating that the taste and affordability of the “beef” sold by street vendors made it a popular choice among consumers. However, upon learning the truth, Sibanda expressed deep hurt and disappointment.
Bongiwe Ngwenya, who resides in the city center, argued that anyone who has eaten meat in Bulawayo has likely consumed donkey meat, especially from backyard restaurants. Ngwenya remarked that donkey meat, considered a delicacy in many countries, including parts of neighboring Botswana, could be a healthier alternative to beef due to its lower cholesterol content.
Responding to the issue, Bulawayo’s director of health services, Edwin Nkosinathi Sibanda-Mzingwane, clarified that there is no law against selling donkey meat. However, he emphasized the importance of purchasing meat from inspected and licensed sources such as registered butcheries. Sibanda-Mzingwane urged residents to avoid buying meat from uninspected sources, as the animals may have been stored in contaminated places or died from unknown diseases.
Inspector Abednico Ncube, the police spokesperson for Bulawayo province, stated that no official reports have been received regarding the issue. He encouraged the public to prioritize their safety by purchasing meat from registered butcheries.
Cowdray Park legislator Arthur Mujeyi expressed his intention to engage with residents to address the issue and find a suitable resolution.