Zimbabwe travellers have bemoaned the recent rise in the number of passengers who are being raped in public transport known as kombis.
Zimbabwe does not have a proper transport system at the moment with the kombis being the only source of transport yet they cause a lot of dangers for the travelling motorists.
In the previous months the country has witnessed an increase in the number of rape cases in the country’s sole public system says Passengers Association of Zimbabwe (PAZ).
“PAZ bemoans the rise in rape cases committed by kombi crews. Some of the victims are as young as fourteen showing the callousness, arrogance, heartlessness and amorality of the perpetrators of these attacks. PAZ is against any form of violence against women. Therefore, it is worrisome to read of cases of rape and kidnapping that have occurred in places as diverse as Bulawayo, Harare and Masvingo, involving commuter omnibus crews,” they said in statement signed off by their President Tafadzwa Goliati.
The association noted that PAZ was concerned at the vulnerability of women passengers especially those that are travelling at night.
“As PAZ we are concerned that women passengers have become extremely vulnerable especially when travelling alone at night. In as much as extreme caution including boarding registered passenger service vehicles at designated bus ranks, needs to be exercised we call upon kombi crews to desist from any form of sexual attack against female passengers, as the wreath of the law will be visited upon them.
They cautioned the public service vehicle providers to vet the kombis in order to deal with criminal elements.
“We call upon owners of passenger service vehicles to thoroughly vet their employees during recruitment and selection as this will go a long way in weeding the sector of criminal elements. The sector should have a vibrant code of conduct which will act as a stitch in time that saves nine,” read the statement.