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Govt suspends licences of Rimbi and Zebra Kiss buses after fatal accident

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Rimbi tours bus accident

TRANSPORT minister Felix Mhona has suspended operating licences for Rimbi and Zebra Kiss bus companies with immediate effect following a fatal accident which occurred on Tuesday that killed one person along the Harare-Nyamapanda Highway.

Videos of the accident circulating on social media showed that negligence by the bus crews led to the fatal accident.

The driver of the Rimbi Tours coach tried to overtake a Zebra Kiss bus. Rimbi bus conductor captured the images as the Zebra Kiss bus driver failed to take heed of a horn warning by the Rimbi bus driver who was indicating his intentions to overtake. 

“The Transport and Infrastructural Development ministry and other actors in the ecosystem of road traffic management, including the Zimbabwe Republic Police, the Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe and emergency health services has established the component of human error, prohibited by sections 51, 52 and 53 of the Road Traffic Act [Chapter 13:11] as the principal cause of the accident,” Mhona’s statement read.

“Sections 51, 52 and 53 of the Road Traffic Act prohibit driving without due care and attention or reasonable consideration for others, negligent or dangerous driving and reckless driving respectively, which violation is a breach of the terms and conditions of the two operators' licences issued for them to operate in Zimbabwe.

“Informed by the foregoing violations and verified videographic circumstances, the Commissioner of Road Transport, after informing the two operators of his intention, and after the operators were given a reasonable opportunity to make representations on the matter in terms of section 17(2) of the Road Motor Transportation Act [Chapter 13:15, invoked the provisions of section 17(1)(b)(i) of the same Act and suspended the licences of Rimbi Travel and Tours and Tashllyt Investments trading as Zebra Kiss from operating all their omnibuses on all the routes as authorised by the Transport ministry.

“This suspension is with immediate effect pending corrective measures by the two operators to ensure that they are in a position to resume operations without breach of the terms and conditions under which their licences are issued. Section 17(1)(b)(i) of the Road Motor Transportation Act empowers the Commissioner of Road Transport to suspend an operator's licence where it appears that there is disregard of the terms and conditions of the licences,” he said.

Mhona said going forward; the provisions of the Road Motor Transportation Act would be implemented consistently and religiously with the view to weed out all errant public transporters.

“In view of the incessant road fatalities being recorded on our roads, I have taken a bold stance to reduce road carnage as the minister responsible for administering laws and regulations on road traffic and safety management.”

He warned all transport operators, associations, motorists and members of the public that the Transport ministry would take stern measures provided by the law against those who wantonly and blatantly violate road traffic rules and regulations.

Mhona said law enforcement agents should be on high alert for traffic offenders.

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