Flouting Of Operational Guidelines By ZUPCO Buses | FULL TEXT
31 August 2021

PASSENGERS ASSOCIATION OF ZIMBABWE STATEMENT (PAZ) notes with growing concern the open disregard for both World Health Organisation and national Covid-19 prevention protocols by public transporter ZUPCO and its many franchise holders.

While government’s efforts to both resuscitate and reinstate ZUPCO as the backbone of the country’s mass public transport system are commendable, we strongly feel the noble initiative is defeated by some of the infractions committed in broad daylight by the transporter and its many franchisees.
These include but are not limited to; loading of passengers far beyond the numbers stipulated by government; inconsistent sanitising of passengers upon boarding as well as failure to wear face masks at all times by some defiant bus crews.

We have also noted that some ZUPCO branded buses plying our roads are not displaying number plates. They are only displaying fleet numbers and chassis numbers, which makes it difficult for one to trace them when road traffic accidents result in death or injury on victims who would want to institute formalities to claim some compensation.
Through this brazen flouting of regulations, it is apparent that ZUPCO bus operators have done nothing to show they are any different from pirate taxi transporters (mushikashika) known for practising the rules of the jungle.
As a passenger rights watchdog, we also wish to register our concerns on that the national fleet remains inadequate and hardly able to meet the ever-present high demand for public transport throughout the country.
While efforts to increase the number of buses through importation of new coaches are noted and commended, we humbly recommend that the government also augments its existing ZUPCO fleet with other alternative mass public transport initiatives such as the Bulawayo Model. We also recommend that this starts with Harare before it could be rolled out to other cities and towns.

ISSUED BY: National Co-ordinator; Passengers Association of Zimbabwe,Tafadzwa Goliati