LAW enforcement agents are turning the heat on illegal taxis as part of efforts to combat cases of kidnapping and murder involving pirate vehicles.
The brutal murder of a 17-year-old Chivhu teenager at the hands of unknown assailants in Mvuma last week has once again opened a pandora’s box on the illegality of pirate taxis.
The deceased, John Mbano from Chivhu had boarded a Toyota SUV with two other passengers, heading to Masvingo which had four people inside.
The boy was robbed of his cash and groceries before he was dumped in a nearby bush, where police found his lifeless body later.
John’s death is adding to the body count of innocent victims who fall prey to pirate taxi bandits.
The Zimbabwe Republic Police is taking a firm stance to flush out the social misfits.
“As the police, we have since launched operation sunshine three where we are targeting unregistered motor vehicles, mushikashikas, touters and any other traffic offenders.
“We started the operation on Thursday and we have arrested more than 520 vehicles. We are encouraging the travelling public to board ZUPCO busses and other recognised public transport operators,” said ZRP Harare Province Deputy Spokesperson, Assistant Inspector Webster Dzvova.
The commuting public has welcomed the move by police to flush out illegal pirate taxis.
“We want to commend the ZRP for launching such an operation because cases of people who are falling victim to illegal pirate taxis are on the increase.
“This will help bring sanity in our cities especially in Harare because as people we are being taken for a ride by these pirate taxis. Penalties for those found on the wrong side of the law should be deterrent enough to send a clear message to would-be offenders,” said members of the public who spoke to the ZBC News crew.
The blitz on pirate vehicles has so far netted more than 500 vehicles.- ZBC News