Tension between the Bulawayo City Council and commuter omnibus operators is still high after the two parties met last Friday to clear the restriction of omnibuses in the Central Business District (CBD).
Bulawayo Public Transport Association Strike Ndlovu chairperson alleges that the council agreed to reverse the decision to restrain kombis in the city centre but Bulawayo Mayor Cllr Thaba Moyo said it was made clear during the meeting that the local authority will not backtrack as it is a council by-law.
Omnibus operators say commuters now opt for private cars which drop off them closer to their destinations. The local authority enforced its by-laws restricting omnibuses popularly known as imtshova which were seen as a menace on the streets.
Ndlovu said the council is now edging omnibuses out of businesses whilst giving advantage to private cars. He said public transport operators pay for their licenses and other costs as per local authority regulations so they don’t need to be unfairly treated.
“When you are out of business like this, it’s hard to even maintain your car and keep it fit,” he said.
Zimbabwe Republic Police officers mounted roadblocks redirecting public transport to Egodini Terminus on the outskirts of the CBD.
BUPTA Chairperson Strike Ndlovu[podcast]http://www.radiodialogue.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Strike.mp3[/podcast]