POLICE in Bulawayo have impounded 80 vehicles that were pirating in defiance of the Government’s travel restrictions meant to curb the spread of Covid-19.
The vehicles were impounded during a blitz dubbed ‘Covid -19 Enforcement’ that started on Monday. The operation is expected to end when sanity prevails.
About two weeks ago police in Bulawayo impounded 127 vehicles that were pirating in defiance of the Government regulations.
Government in March this year banned public transporters and left Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (Zupco) as the sole operator.
Commuter omnibus operators have to register under the Zupco franchise to ferry passengers.
Some of the private operators joined Zupco but others are insisting it is unfair.
In banning the private kombi operators, the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works said it was rationalising the public transport sector which had become chaotic.
In recent weeks, an increasing number of kombis not registered under Zupco and pirate taxis started to illegally ferry commuters on several routes in Bulawayo.
Zupco kombis are charging $24 per trip while pirate taxis and kombis not registered under Zupco are charging $40 or R10 per trip.
Bulawayo police spokesperson Inspector Abednico Ncube said:
“Police in Bulawayo have impounded 80 vehicles which includes 60 pirate kombis, four pirate Honda Fit cars, four pirate buses, two unregistered vehicles and ten cars for violating road laws. These vehicles were banned from ferrying passengers locally or plying the intercity routes,” said Insp Ncube.