A police officer was removed from guarding election materials at a school in Jambezi, Matabeleland North, after being found asleep and drunk on Sunday.

For 30 minutes, senior police officers conducting spot checks on officers deployed at polling stations failed to get Detective Seargent Shepherd Tokowa to answer the door at Sacred Heart Mission.

He was sleeping and “visibly drunk,” according to a police memo of the incident seen by ZimLive.

Tokowa was yanked from guarding ballot papers and other election materials. He was also arrested for “performing duty in an improper manner” and detained at Victoria Falls Police Station.

“At about 9AM on August 20, a team led by Inspector Mbewe was conducting spot checks at polling stations. Upon arrival at Sacred Heart Mission Hall where member was deployed, they found out that the polling station was locked,” the memo from Victoria Falls police said.

 Detective Sergeant Shepherd Tokowa allegedly found drunk next to ballot papers in Jambezi, Matabeleland North

Another police officer peeped through the window “and discovered that the defaulter was still asleep in the hall where he was safeguarding polling material.”

The memo added: “Efforts to awaken the defaulter were made for about 30 minutes when he woke up and unlocked the door.

“The ward election officer Sikhumbuzo Moyo, a teacher at Jabula Primary School in Jambezi, complained to the visiting officers that the member’s conduct was not pleasant, and he looked visibly drunk.

“The defaulter was relieved of his duties and uplifted to Victoria Falls.”

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission has sent election materials to 12,374 polling stations countrywide ahead of Wednesday’s general elections.

Over six million Zimbabweans are registered to vote in the elections.

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