WATCH: Was this tourist in Zimbabwe too cocky? Driver takes on police

If you want to know what it’s like to be stopped at Zimbabwe’s roadblocks, here’s your answer. Be warned: it may not make you want to book a holiday up north.

Source: WATCH: Was this tourist in Zimbabwe too cocky? Driver takes on police | News24

Harare – If you want to know what it’s like to be stopped at Zimbabwe’s roadblocks, here’s your answer. Be warned: it may not make you want to book a holiday up north.

In this video posted to YouTube, a tourist driving an SA-registered vehicle filmed himself getting stopped at multiple police checkpoints as he drives across the southern African country.

Watch the video below. 

Foreign-registered vehicles aren’t supposed to be subject to the same stringent (and constantly changing requirements) for vehicle equipment, which includes reflector strips of a particular length and fire extinguishers secured in a particular way.

At each roadblock the tourist explains that that was the assurance given by “Sergeant-Major Khupe” from Victoria Falls. He also demands to see each police officer’s ID, which hardly any are willing to give him. Sometimes he gives up arguing and just drives off.

“You say we need reflectors. This is a foreign-registered car. We do not need them. We know that. Everyone knows that,” he says at one checkpoint, later adding: “Everyone wants to fine us 20 dollars, 40 dollars, 100 dollars.”

Near the end of the video, the driver is involved in an altercation with an officer as he is made to get out of the car.

Police roadblocks occur with astonishing frequency in Zimbabwe, sometimes as many as four in a 14km stretch. There are fears that foreign tourists are seen as an “easy target” by revenue-hungry officers because they do not always know their rights.

The video has been viewed more than 19 000 times since it was posted on February 5 – but there’s also been criticism of the driver’s “cockiness”.

“His attitude is condescending. When you are stopped by the police in any country, you comply,” commented one viewer. Another said: “The police were very gentle with this guy?”

Did the tourist behave badly?

What do you think?


  • comment-avatar
    nelson moyo 5 years ago

    Remember those cops all have AK 47’s hidden in the bush – in a far away place many Zimbabweans have been done away with never to be seen again – good luck to him but never trust those cops as they are very devious.
    Many muders have been carried out by them and in Zimbabwe there is NO rule of law as these white think will protect them !

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    Gukuruhundi 5 years ago

    This is a wonderful PR campaign for Zimbabwe as a tourist destination and the general attitude of Zed Arra Pee as decreed by the Zanu Top Turkey. This is how it started in Matabeleland – and the end result was 20 000 civilian murders?

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    Doris 5 years ago

    He was polite and was stating his rights as a foreign tourist. The last roadblock was typical of cops who weren’t policing. They were acting like the Gestapo and treated the tourist like criminal. Shocking.

  • comment-avatar

    I’ve read the comment on YouTube, and most of them criticize the tourist for being cocky.
    Just keep in mind:
    – This tourist come from a country where police can not pull you off the road for no reason
    – This tourist started to get irritated because the same thing happened so often
    – This tourist new that the police will target him to make some extra dollars
    How can a country in such need of money chase away its tourists?

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    Pro Lege 5 years ago

    First of all, the tourist had every right to demand to see an ID from the Police. He had every right to demand their name and rank Secondly, at the last road check, everything was on camera/being recorded. He was absolutely right to say that he was going to have the Police detail charged with assault. Even pointing a finger at him is an assault. Attempting to pull him out of the car could be interpreted as “Assasult With Intent To Do Grevious Bodily Harm” – a very serious Assault charge. The last road check deteriorated into an absolute farce with several Police details rabidly assaulting him verbally. The Police details were talking rubbish, exhibiting that they were totally clueless regarding law. The tourist saw first hand what us Zimbabweans are exposed to every day of our lives. If there is any fault with the tourist it would be that he always opened his discussions with “Every Policeman wants to take US dollars from us” (which is true) and always referred to Sgt. Major Nkupe. There is no ways he was condescending at any time. The ZRP and their attitude will now, more than ever, be exposed to ridicule throughout Africa, let alone outside Africa.

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    Mafuta 5 years ago

    What, in any country, is normal about motorists being pulled off the road every few miles? Sooper-stoopid. If a car didn’t have a sticker at the last checkpoint, what, was the car expected to sprout one in the next 5 miles? Is there an auto parts store located right at the checkpoint where the driver can buy and install the sticker? Of course not–then the fleecing game would be over.

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    Bredikuns 5 years ago

    I have family who travel these roads who are regularly stopped and fined for trivial reasons but being Zimbabwean, are aware of the dangers at the hands of the ZRP so pay up and shut up. I go out to Zimbabwe as I have family there and love the place. I too have experienced similar frequent road-blocks and have been fined for minor flaw.s( e.g one of two number plate bulbs not working, $ 5.00 US) . I live in Europe and know many people who have been out as tourists to African countries : Kenya , Uganda , Mozambique, Zambia, SA and Namibia. Sadly very few are going to the perhaps the loveliest African country of them all, and the country which perhaps is most in need of the tourist dollar. This video helps explain why. Sadly I am also aware that many of these frontline police are paid a pittance if at all sometimes, as their government has spent a lot of the country’s wealth

  • comment-avatar

    Give me a break! Transpose the situation and imagine two black men being stopped in Switzerland ( where those tourists are from) and giving the Swiss police the same attitude,their butts would be hauled off to jail for not cooperating and insubordination to a recognised officer of the law,so stop whining and obey the law!! Just because they were white! Black people bear the brunt of all police corruption in Zim every day!

    • comment-avatar
      Ralph small 5 years ago

      There is no equivalence between Swiss law and Zimbabwean “law”, to suggest as much is ignorant or disingenuous.

      • comment-avatar
        Sam Smiler 5 years ago

        Who’s talking “law”? Policemen the world over are the same,give them bad attitude and suffer the consequences. In Latin America or some Asian countries,they would be lucky to be alive. What I’m saying, is that when they can most police will abuse their power and given the same situation in Switzerland (or any other European country; don’t even mention America!!)at a police checkpoint if these guys were black they would have been either tasered/sprayed, cuffed and hauled to the nearest police station.