Kombi operators accuse council of charging high storage fees

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KOMBI operators in Harare have accused council officials and the police of working in cahoots by impounding and detaining their vehicles for several days, forcing them to fork out large sums of money in storage fees.

Staff Reporter

Motorists said the delays became more pronounced last week after several unroadworthy public transport vehicles were impounded in a police blitz and detained at the council’s central stores.

The operators said besides paying the $80 clamping and tow away fees of $132, they were charged a storage fee of $17 per day for each vehicle detained at council’s storage facilities.

Contacted for comment yesterday, council spokesperson Leslie Gwindi denied the charges and blamed motorists for refusing to pay the set charges, hence the delays.

“The problem with these people (motorists) is that they will be busy calling around their friends to try and have the money reduced. These fines are not negotiable. You just have to pay the amount charged and your vehicle is released,” Gwindi said.

Police traffic spokesperson Inspector Tigere Chigome said there was an operation last week which was set at impounding all vehicles which had no requisite papers and those who were parking at undesignated places.

“During an operation we impound vehicles and we put them anywhere where we can get space until fines are paid,” Chigome said.

“Last week we had an operation targeting vehicles with no requisite papers and those parking at undesignated places in order to bring sanity in the city.”

One motorist said: “Police are impounding vehicles and taking them to Harare City Central Stores where we are then asked to pay huge amounts.”

“I had a kombi which was impounded by the police and it was taken to Central Stores where I was asked to pay $132 for a crime which was not committed, but I just paid the fine.”

Another motorist said he paid $300 for his vehicle to be released. Of late, police and kombi drivers have been fighting running battles, some of which have caused fatal accidents.

26 COMMENTS

  1. Fines are high yes but it is of public safety to have prerequisite papers.
    Why shud kombis avoid VID fitness tests or Defensive driving tests.?
    Fines should be higher

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  2. Chimboendai kuma drivers licence.
    Iv been in that business and can estimate that 70% of combi drivers dont have class 2 or are over 25 or even possess the licence in the first place.

  3. Iv been in that business and can estimate that 80% of combi drivers dont have class two or are over 25 or even possess the licence in the first place.
    Apo hatisati tabata zve defensive.
    Kungoenda chete.

  4. Ndiyani asiri kuziva kuti inyaya ya Tanatswa yirikukonzera zvese izvi,Mapuriswa aka transfeyeswa hobho,ikozvino vakuda ku revenger kuvanhu vemakombi,Saka varikutotsvaga kwekuti vapfidze vazive,Ngatichengetedzei mutemo zvakasimba mapurisa ari pa revenge mission.

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  6. Council treats operators like they are not Zimbabweans,their charges are too much,,can the government help us from this kind of treatment we are really pained by their so called actions and charges

  7. what we were waiting for is now here sanity. va tigere this operation should not be for a period our kombi drivers have satanic blood running in their atteries they soon go back to those areas & start killing pple in the name of running away from bribery. ma purisa batai vanhu huwori moisa vo pa zero ndo kuti nyika inake.

  8. Lesley Gwindi and team good work.unroadworth vehicles off the road.if fines are very high just make sure you dont get your kombi impounded make it roadworth.buy a highway code while you are waiting for kombis to be released

    • Unfortunately these guys impounded both those with ALL papers and those without. They do not go kumushika shika but they wait for vehicles coming into Coba cabana when there is no more space to enter the rank. Everyone along Chinhoyi will be arrested even if they are queuing and they have ALL papers.

  9. @ handivanze# iri ndo dofo remandorokwati. saka in yo corrupt mind policing the nation is revenge. dofo a defective vehicle is a potential five or more graves plus many hospital bills iwe uchingoti revenge.

  10. I think the fees charged for renewal of permits, VID, Council fees should be revisited. These fees
    are too high that is why many combi operators fail to comply. This opens up channels for
    corruption where combi drivers end up paying bribes to council officers and police. Please relevant
    authorities look into this matter because some people are making more money than what the governments collects through bribes.

  11. To the higher office of council please can u deploy yr personal to all the ranks,,so that we have order and peace in these ranks,,it looks like after hours we hv combis rushing to mushika shika which is just not right,plz assist so that we can curb this

    • City council officials are corrupt manje, the money will not reach the council coffers. We should all appreciate that combis are many because authorities have failed to provide effective transport system in cities. Vamwe vakatenga ma combies vachishandisa pension dzevarume vavo valkafa asi havazive kunowanikwa mapapers ari kutaurwa, WHY ARE THE AUTHORITIES NOT PUBLICISING THE PROCEDURES. Why are these papers issued by different authorities. Dai kune imwe transport ma combi haaiwana business, Why is re-test difficult to get, ko council ine ma facilities here to accomodate ma combi acho. Vadikani, we are criminalising investment mu economy yedu. The fact that we are going no where in solving the issue at hand is because we are not getting to the root of the problem.

  12. Chinorwadza ndechekuti unenge uinayo mari ye fine but they say you won’t pay the fine until maybe after 5 days and they will want storage per day. Isusu vemakombi takangoomerwawo like every other business

  13. A vehicle is clamped & or towed only/mainly if the driver of the vehicle refuses 2 drive 2 Central stores or after he run away from his vehicle. So there is no need 2 cry foul over clamping & towing fees muri imi munoramba kudriver mota dzenyu.

  14. @handivanze, shame on you! Next time dont comment unonyadzisa puu mhani. Tanatswa apinda papi? Ndiye abvisa mapepa here? Zip up yo

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  16. @ Handivanze yu are absolutely correct and I agree with u all the way. While I would not call it a ‘revenge mission’ I will agree that policing has assumed a noticeable vindictiveness from a the time mass transfers were done. The death of the boy is among the reasons of this reaction it cant be doubted. The police!

  17. Hakuna munhu akaoma musoro senge driver we Kombi kana hwindi! Vanofunga kuti mitemo yamugwagwa ndeye mamwe maDrivers and not vemaKombi. Fines must be prohibitive!!!
    Ngavachajwe manhingi! Mari idzi dazinotova shoma!! Double the fines!!!

  18. Leslie Gwindi is a lie ..workers at central stores are refusing to release vehicles even if yu have the money to pay on that day .My kombi was detained for 6 DAYS .

  19. I suggest that any kombi driver who is arrested for flouting road regulations be denied the option to pay fines, and instead be taken to court where custodial sentences should (also) be preferred against them. This may in some way help in whipping the kombi drivers into line.

  20. combi owners should also be held responsible for employing incompetent drivers. yes high fines open doors for corruption but what is needed is to come up with a system that controls arresting officers and council officers coz its real these officers are receiving bribes

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  22. l think those fees should be very high so that the kombi owners have to think twice whenever they want to put a kombi on the roads. This wil in turn reduce the congestion curretly experienced in the city and l guess no owner wil risk giving an unlicensed driver his vehicle.

  23. Unfortunately these guys impounded both those with ALL papers and those without. They do not go kumushika shika but they wait for vehicles coming into Coba cabana when there is no more space to enter the rank. Everyone along Chinhoyi will be arrested even if they are queuing and they have ALL papers. The real Big issue is space. If addressed it will eliminate a lot of the fights. On the other hand why can’t we have all paper done under one roof for example at VID when one goes for fitness, let them pay for the permits ( council and Ministry), get their rank disk and pay Zimra fees. The decentralization gives room for pple to pay one and not the other and opens system to corruption as each official puts their own delays to make process long

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