Long-distance transport operators, who will be affected by the proposed ban of left-hand drive (LHD) vehicles, have demanded compensation from government for money they spent in buying the haulage trucks so that they remain in business.
Presenting their submissions to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Transport, Communications and Infrastructural Development at a poorly attended public meeting at the Masvingo Civic Centre, Transport Operators’ Association of Zimbabwe chairman Costa Utete said they would be forced out of business as some had not even finished paying for the haulage trucks they bought.
“If Zimbabwe bans the use of LHD vehicles, our operators would be forced out of business, thereby allowing foreign operators to capture the Zimbabwean transport market and creating a monopoly for foreigners.
“The proposed ban is counterproductive and places a significant financial entry barrier on indigenous entrants into the transport industry,” said Utete.
Describing the move as “cruel”, Utete said the ban should be reversed if government was not able to provide compensation to the affected operators.
Utete said the ban could only be effected in 2013 when the economy would have improved.