ZUPCO Criticised For Hiking Fares
Various organisations have criticised the Zimbabwe United Passengers Company (ZUPCO) for increasing intra-city fares to $800, which ZUPCO also says would be equal to one United States dollar.
The official exchange rate announced by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe last Tuesday is about $635 to the greenback, while the black market rate is $800.
Zimbabwe National Organisation of Associations and Residents Trusts (ZNOART) Chitungwiza chairperson Obert Matsika said:
How can they charge USD at the black-market rate? It must charge fares using the bank rate.
National Consumer Rights Association spokesperson Effie Ncube said:
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The fact is that the Zimbabwean dollar is worth less than what the government would like citizens to believe.
The government-dictated rate is completely out of touch with the realities on the ground.
Zimbabwe Union of Drivers and Conductors president Frederick Maguramhinga said:
It’s a move that shows the reality on the ground. Things are tough. It was going to be a burden for the government to continue to give fuel for free.
This also brings fair competition and it should be controlled to benefit the people.
Chitungwiza and Manyame Rural Residents Association secretary Brighton Mazhindu said:
They forced operators to charge in local currency yet spare parts are charged in USD.
So, most operators only joined for free diesel and they didn’t service their routes.
A memorandum, which was signed by Tito Chirau, the Belvedere Depot manager, and addressed to all ZUPCO bus crews, announcing the new fares, also reveals that the bus crews are now mandated to buy their own fuel with effect from 10 November. | NewsDay