BY SILISIWE MABALEKA
THE Zimbabwe Passengers Association (ZPA) has petitioned President Emmerson Mnangagwa, Home Affairs minister Kazembe Kazembe and Police Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga over police officers’ laxity in attending to accident scenes.
They alleged that in some incidents, police attended to accident scenes two hours later.
In the petition, ZPA secretary-general Paul Makiwa said it appeared as if the police were obsessed with recording statements at accident scenes rather than saving lives of the injured.
Makiwa said the conduct of some police officers was worrying and need to change for the travellers’ safety. He appealed to Mnangagwa and other responsible authorities to intervene and address the attitude of the police.
“We witnessed an accident on August 1 in Kwekwe and people were injured and taken to hospital for medical attention by well-wishers before the police officers arrived. It took the police officers about two hours to arrive at the scene. One police officer queried why those who were injured were taken to hospital before the police arrived, adding that it would be difficult for the police to record their statements when the injured are no longer at the scene,” Makiwa said.
“In a way this police officer acted wrongly. His superiors also humiliated the members of the public.”
Makiwa said the police charter stipulated that they should save lives when accidents happen.
“On this note this officer needs to be disciplined since the main duty of police is to save lives. If he wants to take statements from the victims, he should follow them to the hospital,” Makiwa said.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the police were working within set rules.
“There are parameters that the police follow when managing accidents. Passengers associations should engage the commissioner when in need of clarifications,” Nyathi said.