BCC struggles to contain mushika-shika

BULAWAYO - The Bulawayo City Council (BCC) here has admitted failing to address the scourge of commuter omnibuses and small vehicles picking up passengers from undesignated points in the Central Business District (CBD).

“We find that there are a lot of illegal operators that cover their number plates using a cloth, some of them they make it appear like a cloth is just falling from the car but you would realise that it’s strategically positioned to obscure some numbers on the plates making it impossible for our traffic officers to jot down the number plates.

“We have also discovered that there are a lot of fake number plates that look genuine when the car is passing by but they are not correct.”

“The removal of number plates which is also prevalent in the public sector is also seen in the small vehicles normally the Honda Fit and (Toyota) Vitz. There is a lot of tempering with number plates and there is unnecessary competition,” chamber secretary Sikhangele Zhou told journalists yesterday. 

Despite issuing a total of 124 146 tickets this year alone with an approximate value of $2 million, the council still has no idea how to contain the errant behaviour particularly by those  illegally carrying passengers.

Not even the joint operations involving the Zimbabwe Republic Police have worked.

“If we do an operation there (undesignated spots),  as soon as we leave the area, the problem starts again and we are constrained in terms of manpower levels manning all the hot spots. So you find that we come and go and the problem recurs.

“We are seeing also that we are failing in a way, we know we have not done enough because the problem is overwhelming for us. At this point in time, there is a lot of illegal public operators,” Zhou said.

“We hope that as we roll out the transport policy, the situation will recoup. For now we know that we have challenges along certain areas like a portion near Max Garage and 6th Avenue which is the worst,’ he added.

The transport policy which the council said will be “rolled out soon” seeks to eliminate individual ownership of kombis in the city where transporters have to join one of the three associations: Bulawayo Public Transporters Association (Bupta), Tshova Mubaiwa Co-operative (TMC) or Bulawayo City Transit (BCTT).

Each of the operators has been allocated specific routes to avoid speeding and fighting for passengers.

Comments (5)

Where is the ZRP in the face of all this? Have they abrogated their responsibilities to chase bribes and not do their job? Worse still, you find vehicles with no number plates but ZANU PF YOUTH LEAGUE. Is the Zanu PF Youth League a sacred cow that is above the law?

MR COOPER - 27 June 2017

This is not surprising at all.These illegal commuter bus operators have become cash cows for ZRP details.One finds that those commuter buses which conceal number plates of their vehicles pass through those daily police road blocks without any problem.Corruption that we used to read about security forces in countries north of us like Zaire Central Africa Republic etc who daily extorted monies from the suffering public is now with us.No doubt it is the culture which is now strongly rooted in the ZRPolice nowadays,it would need a very dedicated and no nonsense new Commissioner Gen. with a strong moral fibre to root it out.Chihuri has failed dismally to instil discipline in a police force which was once the envy of the entire continent, if not the whole world.

general spinola - 27 June 2017

The ZRP stop and harass innocent motorists letting those with no number plates go through freely. I have seen it many times.

Disgusted - 28 June 2017

What Zimbabwe really needs is a new no-nonsense president in the likes of Magufuli of Tanzania. H e has managed to instil terror in the hearts of corrupt people both in the public and private sectors. Currently Zimbabwe is a free-for-all with no co control or accountability whatsoever!

Jonso - 28 June 2017

what we shou;ld realise is that out of 20 honda fit vehicles doing this 18 belong to members of the ZRP these guys can not arrest or detain their own drivers. if they were genuine check points these cars should not even pass at these points. Ask any commuter wil tel you these guys pay as little as $1

Muzi Kamitingondo - 28 June 2017

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