ZUPCO to aquire 500 more buses
The Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (ZUPCO) will take delivery of 500 buses by next year, with 150 coaches set to be delivered by the end of this year, to add to its current fleet of 467, also as part of a comprehensive plan to boost the country’s mass public transport system.
The 500 vehicles will come in three sizes train coaches, conventional buses, and minibuses to add to the current Zupco fleet of 467.
The parastatal is also refurbishing its old buses, with 27 coaches having been completed to date. This month, the first batch of 12 buses, which are currently awaiting registration and licensing, will be delivered to service Harare routes.
Local Government and Public Works Ministry chief director Mr Shingirayi Mushambi confirmed the news.
He said the Government will bankroll the acquisition of the buses, which are expected to ease transport challenges in urban areas.
“The government is concerned with the plight of urban commuters. We are aware that they are arriving late at work and at home, and this situation is not what any Government would wish for its people.
“Working together with the Ministry of Finance (and Investment Promotion), we are increasing the rollout of ZUPCO buses, particularly in cities and towns.
“As such, we are expecting 500 new buses to be imported. The first batch of 150 buses should be delivered before year-end.”
Mushambi said part of the fleet will service long-distance routes including rural areas. He added:
“Government is working on a multi-modal urban transport system, which will see rail transit, mass rapid bus system and also ensure that the entire value chain associated with the urban mass transport system is enabled, from fuel to supplies for spare parts for maintenance and the system of enabling and facilitating the deployment of rolling stock to our roads.”
He also urged private players to register and complement Government’s efforts to provide an efficient transport system. Zimbabwe Union of Drivers and Conductors (ZUDAC) president Mr Fradreck Maguramhinga said operators were trying to modernise their fleet, in line with Government guidelines.
“Currently, we have a fleet of over 1 000 kombis. Our short-term plan is to modernise our fleet, in line with Government’s guidelines,” he said.