Community Development Opinions Politics

Mutare Accident: United Freedom Party blasts police

A police officer manning a roadblock with a spike

By Tafadzwa Muranganwa

A new opposition outfit, United Freedom Party has accused the police of being complicit in the fatal accident near Mutare.

The accident occurred on Tuesday along Vumba Road when a commuter omnibus plying the Mutare-Chigodora route veered off the road and overturned after a police officer allegedly threw a spike. According to UFP, such an act is an indication of the lack of professionalism in the police service.

“The United Freedom Party (UFP) notes with great concern the fatal accident where 4 people died and 8 were seriously injured when police threw a spike on a moving commuter omnibus near Mutare on Wednesday.

“As a party, we are irked that some members of our police service have abandoned the key values of professionalism that are a component of their work ethic. Instead, they have become callous and uncaring,” said the party in a statement.

The Godwin Zivavose-led party reminded the police of its service charter and recommended sterner measures to curb the occurrence of such unfortunate incidents.

“The Zimbabwe Republic Police says it is a people-oriented police service provider that seeks to maintain law and order towards the socio-economic development of the people and one of its objectives is to reduce traffic accidents.

“A responsible and professional Police Service should protect the public as per their service charter and not to cause the loss of the lives of the very people they are meant to protect,” added UFP

Last year in July, Justice Owen Tagu made a ruling that the use of spikes by police was within the confines of the law but UFP says the government needs to ban this.

“As UFP, we call upon the authorities to ban the use of spikes. We realise some vehicles like kombis have been banned from our roads but this does not justify the use of spikes that leads to the death of innocent people,” queried the opposition party.

The call by UFP comes at a time the country’s public transport system is in shambles leaving commuters with no option but to use the illegal kombis which play the cat-and-mouse games with the police.

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Byron Adonis Mutingwende