2 January 2013

Zambia: Drivers, Beware of Prowlers!

TAXI drivers must be extremely cautious in the way they operate because they have lately become easy prey for the blood-thirsty prowlers who are killing them in cold blood.

Criminals have found it easy to pounce on innocent drivers particularly those using cars which are not registered as public service vehicles.

The latest killing of a Kabwe taxi driver is a sad tale and an indication that criminals are not relenting in their pursuit for cash, which they have not sweated for.

Operators must ensure they register their vehicles in accordance with the requirements of the statutes under the Road traffic Act.

Secondly, taxi drivers must always operate with co-workers and not succumb to strange 'customers' who demand that they do not need any extra passengers in the vehicle.

Thirdly, operators should not accept bookings to outskirts and hidden areas.

In the light of increasing murder cases, drivers should not operate in the night, though it is during that time that business becomes brisk.

Taxi drivers have certainly become easy prey for criminals, who find it easy to commander them once they capture them in outskirts, dark corners, or backstreets.

In the Kabwe episode, taxi driver identified as Gift Tembo went missing at the weekend and his body was discovered near Makombe area on Kabwe-Lusaka road with deep cuts on his neck.

The 28-year-old Katondo resident was stabbed in the neck and dumped in a bush by sick criminals. Blood on their hands!

Two weeks ago, 20-year-old Matthew Chipili was gruesomely killed and his body dumped in Roma Township with his facial skin peeled off, left eye gouged out, and his gullet removed. The assailants also went away with his tongue.

This pattern suggests that criminals have found it easy to snatch automobiles and cash from defenceless drivers, who unsuspectingly jump on any opportunity of a long-distance booking.

As we have indicated before, Community sensitisation programmes must be intensified in all public places, learning institutions, and work places.

The youth in particular should be blended in sensitisation programmes while teachers in primary and nursery schools along with their pupils must be given extra publicity about these prowlers.

This country cannot continue losing human beings at the hands of sick maniacs, who enjoy spilling blood at any turn. This must come to and end.

Law enforcement officers must intensify foot and motorised patrols in all areas all the time.

Taxi drivers; beware of prowlers.

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