Talent Gore

ROGUE drivers are turning the country’s roads and streets in major cities into highways of death and authorities have been urged to take back control of this jungle.

Last week, Government revealed that 25 people have lost their lives in road traffic accidents countrywide so far this month.

H-Metro spoke to some Harare residents who said the time had come for authorities to take decisive action and arrest the slide into anarchy on the roads.

“A few months ago our streets were filled with forex dealers and they were everywhere but once authorities decided that this was unacceptable and costing our country in a big way, they took control and we don’t see them anymore,” said Atanas Makombe.

“This can be done on the roads and I can assure you that discipline will come back to our roads.

“We need to show these drivers that there is a big price to pay for their wayward behaviour, there should be examples, including seeing others going to prison.”

Another Harare resident, who chose not to be named, said:

“Drivers are not learning defensive skills and they don’t follow the road regulations and speed limits.

“Defensive driving is important.

“Drivers are not following the law and are getting drunk while speeding, most of them will be high on drugs and it is very unfortunate that we have to be driven by people in such a state.”

During a visit to one of the accident scenes last week, Transport and Infrastructure Development Minister Felix Mhona said:

“In the past 10 days, we lost 25 lives, meaning that there is something wrong on our roads. This has affected the President.

“We are no longer going to take this lightly because there seems to be many things which are not being done properly. 

“Some transport operators are found without proper certificates of fitness, which is where the problem is emanating from. 

“There is recklessness in using our roads.”

Police spokesperson, Commissioner Paul Nyathi, said the police was committed to tightening law enforcement, monitoring and evaluation of vehicles along highway checkpoints. 

“We implore the public to be responsible on the roads. If certain vehicles pass checkpoints and people get injured as a result of negligence on the part of police officers, swift action will be taken,” he said.

Among the recent accidents is one which claimed five lives in Mazowe last week and another that saw nine people being burnt beyond recognition when a bus caught fire in Gandanzara.

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