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Police warn pirate taxis, kombi drivers

Police yesterday warned pirate taxi and kombi drivers that they risk having their vehicles impounded if they are found with touts hanging at the back or on the doors of their vehicles.

Police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba
Police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba

In a statement, chief police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba said they had noted with concern such unacceptable behaviour.

“The Zimbabwe Republic Police has noted with concern the unacceptable behaviour by some touts, who cling precariously on the back of commuter omnibuses and doors of small vehicles that are used by illegal transport operators (Mushikashika) to ferry passengers while these vehicles are in motion,” she said.

She said police have recorded incidences where some touts had fallen and were eventually run over.

“Clinging or hanging out of moving vehicles is illegal and against public safety.

“The so-called touts are tarnishing the image of the transport industry and the country at large,” Snr Asst Comm Charamba said.

She urged commuter omnibus operators to rein in their drives and conductors against such acts.

“Stern action will be taken against offenders and commuter omnibus operators will be held responsible for this uncouth behaviour by their crews.

“Any vehicles found on the road with anyone hanging and clearly exhibiting carelessness and life-threatening behaviour will be impounded,” she said.

In October last year, the ZRP said they were pressing for the enactment of a law that deals with pirate taxis.

This came after 123 unlicensed drivers were arrested countrywide last year after being involved in road traffic accidents.

The current legislation does not have deterrent measures against the pirate taxis and errant commuter omnibus crews.

The unlicensed drivers were arrested between January 1 and September 30 last year.

They faced charges of driving without driver’s licences, negligent driving and culpable homicide.

The officer commanding national traffic, Senior Assistant Commissioner Fellie Chikowero-Mjanga, said there was need for a new law to deal with the pirate taxis and omnibus crews.

She said the force had noted that deterrent measures could instil discipline among motorists. The Herald