‘Untouchables’ wreak havoc in Harare

POLITICALLY-connected “untouchable” individual vehicle owners, corrupt police officers and municipality officials are behind the chaos within the central business district, Harare’s rapid results project has alleged.


Harare City Council
Harare City Council

Harare City Council embarked on a 100-day rapid results initiative at the beginning of October last year and findings from the trafficable roads feedback report showed most touts were becoming increasingly defiant because of political backing.

The rapid results trafficable roads feedback team leader, Ernest Muchena told an end of project review workshop yesterday that people operating taxis from illegal points were using names of people in “high offices”.

“We have found that in some instances, commuter omnibuses were putting names of notable public officials on the commuter to intimidate the municipality or police from carrying out their duties. Also, we have heard reports of corruption, where some police and municipality officials were allowing these illegal ranks to remain where they are,” he said.

Muchena made reference to two illegal ranks in the city, which he said were close to Harare Central Police Station, but police seemed to have failed to tame them.

“Corruption is one of the things we need to address. We need to investigate these claims to get to the bottom of what is happening and also look into these so-called ‘untouchables’,” he said.

During the plenary session, issues got heated with representatives of commuter omnibus operators accusing city officials of double standards.

“If commuter omnibus drivers are parking along Julius Nyerere Way right in front of the Harare City Council, then what is being done? You are showing us pictures of illegal ranks, but none that are close to city offices. This raises serious questions,” a representative said.

Deputy chief secretary to the President and Cabinet, Ray Ndhlukula, in his speech, also weighed in on the dangerous cat-and-mouse games between police and city security officials on one hand and illegal commuter operators on the other.

“The commuter omnibus chaos still persists though we had a team that was put in place to ensure that all illegal ranks are dealt with. It is important to note that being focused on the set goal is a key principle in the rapid results initiative,” he said.

Empowering the City of Harare’s law enforcement agency with arresting powers and following up on allegations of corruption are some of the key solutions going forward after the 100-day review.

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  1. So a study has been carried out? How long are we going to wait for action?

  2. Willard Tramposo

    Good question @ Remember. Its a waste of time and resources carrying out that project.

  3. why is it that these municipal police do not ware uniforms they just identify themselves. thats the reason why there is corruption. who knows what will happen when they drive away with the combi out they will simply disembark as ordinary passenger and get away with the loot. the reason for this is that there managers are very old to think with the new systems taking place, how can you still employ someone who work during HARARE UNITED error to have new ideas. yes they might have degrees but those degrees no longer work this computer age days.

  4. All the answers, and the organisations and individuals relating to the answers, were all known before the research exercise was carried out. A few well connected persons needed some hefty allowances in their pockets and their friends in influential posts and higher authority gladly obliged. As already indicated, who then gets hired to make more money by acting on what the investigation found out.

  5. dont you know that zimbabwe is good at studies researches and commissions of enquiry. nothing is done beyond that.

  6. kerb chakanesta

    Ah!A study!?? These idiots. You don’t need a study to restore order. The chaos is glaring even to the ants and cockroaches. Mbavha

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