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Zupco to get 500 more buses

by Staff reporter
08 Oct 2023 at 07:49hrs | Views
The Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (Zupco) is set to receive a total of 500 buses by the next year, including 150 coaches to be delivered by the end of this year, as part of a comprehensive plan to enhance the country's public mass transportation system.

These 500 vehicles will come in three different sizes, including train coaches, conventional buses, and minibuses, to supplement the current Zupco fleet of 467. In addition to acquiring new buses, the state-owned company is also refurbishing its existing buses, with 27 coaches already completed. This month, the first batch of 12 refurbished buses, awaiting registration and licensing, will be put into service on Harare routes.

The Zimbabwean government is funding the procurement of these buses, with most of them being imported, while some will be assembled locally.

In an interview with The Sunday Mail, Mr. Shingirayi Mushambi, the Chief Director for Spatial Planning and Development at the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works, stated that the influx of buses is intended to alleviate the transportation challenges experienced in urban areas, especially following the crackdown on unauthorized taxis.

Mr. Mushambi said, "The government is concerned about the difficulties faced by urban commuters, including arriving late at work and home. To address this situation, we are increasing the deployment of Zupco buses, particularly in cities and towns. We expect 500 new buses to be imported, with the first batch of 150 buses scheduled for delivery before the end of the year."

He also emphasized that rural areas would not be overlooked, as a portion of the fleet would be allocated for long-distance routes.

Mr. Mushambi explained, "The government is working on a multi-modal urban transport system, which includes rail transit, a mass rapid bus system, and ensuring the entire value chain associated with the urban mass transport system is facilitated, from fuel to spare parts for maintenance, and enabling the deployment of rolling stock on our roads."

He encouraged private transportation operators to register and collaborate with the government to establish an efficient transport system. Mr. Fradreck Maguramhinga, the President of the Zimbabwe Union of Drivers and Conductors (ZUDAC), mentioned that operators are making efforts to modernize their fleets in accordance with government guidelines. Currently, there are over 1,000 kombis (minibuses) in their fleet, and their short-term plan involves upgrading and modernizing their vehicles to align with government directives.

Source - The Sunday Mail