Savagery, dogmatism and intolerance are all detrimental to good service delivery.
Many people get serious stress, depression and can end up losing life because of experiences of life.
While there are natural causes that contribute to desolation, man-made factors are the chief drivers of melancholia.
For years, motorists have cried but their cries are landing on deaf ears as they are tormented left, right and centre.
Many people are caught in the melee as the brutality shown by those responsible for parking in Harare Central Business District, is beyond human understanding.
Why is it that City Parking is allowed to willy-nilly torment motorists by charging exorbitant clamping charges of over US$57 yet in some cases the blame should be on the parking agents?
My heart bled one day when I saw a woman who had her car clamped when she had rushed to the toilet while leaving her Grade 5 school kid inside.
The woman tried to negotiate with the clamping officer that when she parked her car, there was no parking agent nearby so she could pay. No one listened. She started to shed tears because she had only US$5 in her wallet yet City Parking wanted US$57.
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I had to give her $55 dollars for her car to be unclamped as she was rushing to school. I imagined the heinous character of the officer involved, one supervisor Ngoshi, operating at Mbuya Nehanda/Charter intersection, who arrogantly declared that she was untouchable.
The callousness she exhibited is not synonymous with a woman and the impunity she showed was highly suggestive of a profiteering syndicate that is on the rampage.
The residents of Harare are really in hot soup with the parking officers and the most painful thing is that many affected motorists are dying in silence when some unscrupulous agents are siphoning money off their pockets.
Where are the city fathers to redress this situation? Why are motorists charged exorbitant fees of more than US$57 and touring charges of more than US$85?
These elephantine charges are only there for self-aggrandisement and not for service delivery fund-raising.
Where is the mayor when citizens are being taken for a ride? Is this service delivery that people expect when parking agents are busy profiteering at the expense of suffering residents?
If it is true that agents like Easy Park only remit 26% of what they get to Harare City Council, then we are taken for a ride as a colossal 74% is converted to one pocket.
City misery has been dormant for the past 15 years or so with no solution in sight.
Mayors have been changed several times, town clerks have been changed many times, many directors have been thrown into the fray, alas, no radiance has come up to today.
If city fathers continue showing serious signs and symptoms of this sadistic failure, then government should whip the so-called leaders into line.
There are two ministers that are very relevant on such issues in Harare, thus the Local Government and State for Harare Metropolitan Province ministers.
Where are they when motorists continue to experience incessant haemorrhage in the hands of corrupt officials masquerading as parking agents?
The city fathers should urgently stop the clamping madness that is haunting motorists today.
We cannot allow ourselves to be abused by few city parking thugs who are making Pareto profits.
- Dr Johannes Marisa is a medical practitioner, an educationist and a public health expert who can be reached on [email protected]