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Zinara pleads with Zanu-PF over toll fees

by Staff reporter
05 Feb 2024 at 04:24hrs | Views
THE Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) has pleaded with ordinary and senior Zanu-PF officials to stop abusing tollgates amid concerns that its activists are refusing to pay passage fees.

Zanu-PF chairperson Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri last year confirmed that the party had received reports of its members refusing to pay toll fees across the country.

Muchinguri-Kashiri revealed this at the party's annual conference in December last year.

She said the party leadership had received reports of some Zanu-PF members producing party cards to intimidate Zinara officials to exempt them from paying toll fees.

However, Zinara officials at the 30km peg tollgate along the Masvingo-Mutare Highway have complained that Zanu-PF officials were refusing to pay toll fees.

NewsDay heard that party officials were in the habit of inserting dummy number plates inscribed; "Zanu-PF" or "ED-Pfee" and party scarves on vehicle dashboards or speed away from the tollgate without paying.

Zinara has since posted a notice at the tollgate quoting verbatim Information ministry secretary Ndavaningi Mangwana's post on X (formerly Twitter) in which he was relaying Muchinguri-Kashiri's warning against evading tollgates.

"Respecting rules and regulations of the party is important. There are those of you who arrive at tollgates with every evidence that you are Zanu-PF members and say we are Zanu-PF members so we should be exempted from paying. That kind of indiscipline is shameful and it does not reflect well on the President, Comrade OCZ Muchinguri K," the notice says.

NewsDay caught up with an official at the tollgate who confirmed that Zanu-PF officials were refusing to pay toll fees.

"Of course, we had to hide behind a more authoritative voice because we are having a torrid time with those politicians. You see people like (name supplied) would just pass by here in the Zanu-PF vehicle and they would just greet and signal us to let them pass through the side road.  So we had to put up that notice," the official said.

Zinara spokesperson, Tendai Mugabe, however, said Zanu-PF officials were compliant with the law on paying toll fees.

"I won't be able to comment on that because I am not aware of the notice. But they (Zanu-PF members) have always been compliant. We have not had challenges with the people (you are) talking about," he said.

Zanu-PF director for information Farai Marapira urged party members to pay toll fees.

"An instruction was passed at the national conference by the national chair for all Zanu-PF members to abide by the law and considering how the instruction was given and the discipline in Zanu-PF, there is no possibility that they can refuse to pay the tollgates," he said.

"We are a very disciplined party and we do not expect anyone to act against the directive from top party leadership. I don't believe there is anyone who can pass through the tollgate after refusing to pay because there would be police officers."

Zanu-PF officials are known for abusing their party membership to seek favours including hijacking national programmes such as food distribution.

Source - newsday