Labour Economists and Afrikan Democrats (LEAD) is saddened about the Beitbridge incident involving a Mulaudzi bus.
Frankly speaking the transportation system in Zimbabwe is now like a circus and there is need to to restore order and protection of passengers.
Government’s introduction of Zupco buses and the banning of Commuter Omnibuses was a good move which unfortunately has failed to service all routes and provide reliable, efficient and timeous transportation of the commuting public.
ZUPCO reduced bus fare hikes and stabilized the bus fare at a reasonable rate which has saved commuters the abuse from local tauts and commuter omnibuses operators, however the move has brought another challenge of shortage of public transport.
The commuting public which include school children, workers and various commuters are now spending a lot of time stranded in town due to the unavailability of the Zupco at certain times.
Government has to consider that introduction of curfews due to covid 19, Hass added on to the pressure of the availability of Zupco buses since people now work the same time thus travelling time of almost everyone is at the same time to and from the CBD.
Wherever there is a gap like this opportunists tend to arise. This is normal even in developed countries moreover in our country it’s bound to happen.
The shortage of ZUPCO buses has led other bus operators not registered with ZUPCI to operate to help with the transport crisis. It is unfortunate that time and again we have witnessed non ZUPCO buses being tear gased and the ZRP made a commitment that no bus shall be tear gased with passengers on board.
Violence is never the solution. What happened in Beitbridge concerning Mulaudzi bus is totally unacceptable.
As a party that is concerned with the protection of all Zimbabweans, we demand a thorough investigation on what really transpired with the Mulaudzi bus incident.
The UN Special Rapporteur on coercive measures is coming to Zimbabwe on the 18th of October to assess the impact of sanctions on the enjoyment of human rights.
As has been thee norm some of our erstwhile Comrades in the opposition forces usually use normative leverage by creating dubious situations ahead of the UN rapporteurs visit. We are all aware that Zimbabwe Traffic police does not carry teargas.
They carry spikes. Teargas is only used by anti riot police when there are riots. In the Mulaudzi buss incident video there is no sign of a police officer throwing tear gas into the bus.
It is not the first time this has happened, last time there was teargas in the courtroom during the trial of Job Sikhala in Masvingo. Thirdly, there is no evidence that the teargas is from ZRP.
We are now accustomed to the theatrics being organized and staged ahead of the country visit by the UN envoy so that the narrative of human rights violations is sustained and sanctions are sustained, illegal as they are because they were never approved by the UN Security Council.
Let us be vigilant and guard against the unpatriotic who thrive on painting Zimbabwe black . Innocent children where affected by the teargas to achieve what? All political parties should stop sacrificing innocent people to make political statements.
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LEAD SECRETARY FOR INFORMATION AND PUBLICITY