PUBLIC transport operators in Harare have urged the city council to provide alternative locations for ranks as the city prepares to remove illegal operators causing disruption in the Central Business District (CBD).
Bus and kombi drivers have called for police enforcement of existing regulations and suspension of operations by those failing to comply.
There has been a significant influx of both inter-city and cross-border bus operators openly touting and competing for passengers in the CBD in open violation of council by-laws.
One bus driver only identified as Bla Moze said to restore order on the city’s streets, the Government must impound and suspend licences of buses operating illegally.
“The buses that park and pick up passengers at undesignated places must be fined heavily to act as a deterrent to others that break city by-laws,” Bla Moze said.
Another operator said those operating illegally were stealing business from them.
“We pay for our vehicles to be on the road. We take them for roadworthy tests and permits, but these people just operate without getting arrested. The law must be enforced for sanity to prevail in the CBD,” said the operator.
National police spokesperson, Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi, warned operators who continue to break the law, saying they face arrest.
“We are targeting drivers and also making sure the law runs its course through operators and management. If there are such cases, they must be reported to the local police,” Ass Comm Nyathi said.
“When it comes to pirate taxis(mushikashika) picking up people from illegal pick-up points, the law is very clear. These people don’t have permits and they’re violating the Highway Code and definitely they will be arrested. Those who see such activity must report it to the police.”
Harare City Council spokesperson, Stanley Gama, could not be reached for comment.