Police officers owning pirate taxis warned

GOVERNMENT has warned police officers owning and operating private and pirate taxis that it was against civil service ethics to operate an illegal business entity and they risked being dismissed if discovered.

Transport and Communications Minister Kapembwa Simbao has warned police officers that they should not get involved in illegal businesses because that had the potential to compromise their work.

On Monday, private bus operators in Kitwe protested and parked their vehicles over Government’s failure to stop the increasing number of pirate taxis which they accused of robbing them of business.

The operators have since resumed work after holding a meeting with Mr Simbao at Moba Hotel in Kitwe.

Commuters were left stranded in Kitwe and other towns on Monday after the operators parked their buses in protest against the mushrooming pirate taxis which were suffocating their routes and adversely affecting their business.

Zambia Bus and Taxi Workers Union (ZABTWU) vice-president Poster Jumbe confirmed to the Daily Nation that public bus operators in Kitwe had resumed work after a meeting with Transport Minister Kapembwa Simbao.

“We had a meeting with Mr Simbao and we raised the issue of civil servants particularly police officers owning pirate taxis.

‘‘The minister issued a warning against such officers to stop or else they may get fired because they are breaking the law,” he said.

Other issues discussed was the one-year renewal of the PSV licence which the minister said would be done after three years.

“I can confirm that public bus drivers have resumed work after a meeting with the minister. It was a good and progressive meeting because the minister listened to what the bus operators were complaining about.

On the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) submissions, Mr Jumbe said the minister had promised to consult the officers at ZRA on how best to deal with the matter.