NRZ is dead: Gumbo

TRANSPORT minister Joram Gumbo told Senate that the situation at the comatose National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) had worsened, making it difficult to attract investors and resuscitate it.

Source: NRZ is dead: Gumbo – NewsDay Zimbabwe March 13, 2017

BY VENERANDA LANGA/BLESSED MHLANGA

Gumbo said NRZ operations have been on a downward spiral for years now.

“Just yesterday (Wednesday) we presented a paper to Cabinet to look at options to resuscitate NRZ, but the problem is that their books are very bad to the extent it is difficult to attract partners, but we are negotiating with different companies for partnership,” he said.

Gumbo said the poor performance by NRZ was contributing to the dilapidation of roads in the country as heavy goods were carried by road instead of rail.

He said one of the problems that affected NRZ was overstaffing, where they used to have 20 000 employees, which dropped to 12 000 in 1990 before the current idle 5 000.

Gumbo also told the Senate that government would not compensate vehicles damaged by potholes, adding it was the duty of vehicle owners to insure their vehicles.

The Transport minister recently told journalists that the death of NRZ has forced transporters to move heavy loads such as granite stone, coal and raw minerals by road.

“When we construct roads it is done in such a way that some roads are only meant for light vehicles and medium toll vehicles like the Harare Bindura road, but that road is now being used by trucks which carry up to 50 tonnes of black granite stones and this is now destroying the road. The point is that rail, which is supposed to provide transport for such heavy stones is not working properly and, therefore, people are forced to use the road,” Gumbo said.

Government has come under fire over allegations that Gumbo’s ministry was allowing the construction of substandard roads, with most falling apart inside five years amid corruption accusations.

NRZ board chairman, Larry Mavhima, backed Gumbo saying that the viability of the parastatal was vital to road maintenance and durability.

“We have to access funding so that we turn around the fortunes of NRZ and allow it to play its role in reliving the burden of the toll brought by heavy trucks on our roads, unfortunately before we are capitalised transporters will continue using road,” he said.

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COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 4
  • comment-avatar
    Diasporan 6 months

    Like everything else in Zims, lack of investment by the ZANU PF thieves & their despot dictator is killing our once rich country. They only care about how wealthy they are. With 95% unemployment & rising there is no hope, the situation is unrecoverable, things will only get worse, there will be a humanitarian crisis soon.

  • comment-avatar
    Flick 6 months

    mugabe&co have to go before there is any chance of anything in Zimbabwe recovering.

  • comment-avatar
    mike 6 months

    ah but they all own trucking firms . please supply names of insurance co that insures suspension repairs even the shock absorber suppliers will no longer give any guarantee . same as az looking for partners

  • comment-avatar

    There was a joke last week in the RSA where a comedian quipped that “In Zimbabwe they used to drive left, but now they are driving on what is left of the road”. I also heard a joke by one very ardent ZANU P(H) supporter in Karoi some time ago, I think in 2006, who said a man caught a fish in that small dam on entry to Karoi and brought it home at Chiedza Township a few hundred meters away from the dam, where the wife said there was no cooking oil, no electricity, and no water in the taps. In frustration the man took the fish back to the dam since it was still breathing – in order that it should procreate and multiply its species rather than die and rot and be thrown away. Somehow the fish heard the whole exchange between husband and wife. Upon touching fresh water again it swam a few meters then made a u-turn and came to say something to the man – it said “Pamberi ne ZANU PF!” AND IT SWAM AWAY IN GLEE!