Helen Kadirire 7 June 2017
HARARE – Acting President Emmerson Mnangagwa has urged the Home Affairs
and Tourism ministries to join hands and find a lasting solution to the
pervasive bribe-seeking police checkpoints hindering travellers on the
roads to Zimbabwe’s famous tourist spots.
This comes as tourists have added their voice to growing concerns over the
heavy presence of Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) officers on the country’s
roads, with over half of respondents in a Zimbabwe National Statistics
Agency (Zimstat) survey saying they felt harassed.
“I am aware that the issue of roadblocks has been raised by a number of
“As government, we remain committed to the free movement of tourists and
the need to ensure their safety.
“I therefore urge the two ministers of Home Affairs (Ignatius Chombo) and
Tourism and Hospitality Industry (Walter Mzembi) to sit down together
under one roof and further determine how the need for safety and movement
of tourists can be guaranteed.
“I also want to commend the ZRP, the visiting public and tourists,
especially in the Victoria Falls area, for their cooperation,” Mnangagwa
said at the official launch of the International Year of Sustainable
Tourism for Development in Harare yesterday.
The vice president also implored local authorities to ensure that their
towns and cities are clean at all times following Mzembi’s remarks that
the country is not marketable because of its filth.
“So far, the cleanest city in Africa is Kigali, Rwanda, hence we would
want to emulate it and have a culture of cleanliness which is next to
“Indigenous knowledge systems inform us to do thorough cleaning of our
environs, especially when expecting visitors. We cannot invite tourists to
dirty environments,” he said.
Mzembi said 95,6 percent of people who visit Zimbabwe intend on coming
back again, while 83,1 percent of the satisfied visitors said they had
value for money.
“The less than 5 percent in the 38 680 sample who were not satisfied cited
various reasons and 63,2 percent said Zimbabwe was a highly-priced
destination, 43,3 percent said they felt harassed by the police at
roadblocks. 31,1 percent cited poor infrastructure and other facilities
and 22,2 percent of the sample cited poor quality services.
“14,7 percent felt they were harassed by customs and Zimra and 8,7 percent
said they felt harassed by immigration. The good news is that only 6,5
percent felt that they would not come again because the people were not
friendly,” Mzembi said.