30 January 2013

Zimbabwe: Council Blitz Nets 81 Touts, Kombi Crews Hail Move

At least 81 rank marshals were arrested last week for touting under the ongoing Harare city rank clean-up exercise which started last year. The touts, who were harassing travellers and demanding money from commuter omnibus drivers, were arrested at different ranks in the city.

Harare provincial spokesperson Inspector Tedious Chibanda confirmed the arrests.

"We are happy to say that more police officers are being deployed at city ranks to ensure a thorough elimination of touts and rank marshals," said Inspector Chibanda.

Inspector Chibanda said anyone abused by touts should report to the nearest police station.

"We are advising the public or any victim of harassment by the touts to report immediately to any nearest police station or police officer on duty for help," he said.

Commuters in Mbare have since expressed concern over the increase of touts and rank marshals in their area.

Takunda Gokwe of Mbare said: "I was really disturbed to see innocent people being harassed by touts at Mbare Musika in broad daylight and I am also a victim of such bullying acts."

Tonderai Chikoto, a kombi driver plying the City-Mbare route, said rank marshals were taking advantage of the absence of police officers at bus stops.

"The so-called rank marshals are now coming during peak hours because police officers will be away," he said.

Police and the Harare City Council officers have been carrying out an operation to get rid of touts that were contributing to chaos and congestion in the city. The touts were harassing drivers and passengers, demanding money.

Copyright © 2013 The Herald. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.