THE Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) is using the numerous roadblocks mounted on the roads around the country as a way of raising revenue to fund its operations because the Treasury is not providing it with any money, says a senior police officer.
The senior officer, who asked not to be named, says the force is depending on the numerous roadblocks to generate revenue since it is not receiving any funding from the Treasury.
“We are not receiving a single cent from the Treasury,” she says.
There has been an outcry from both motorists and members of the public over the number of roadblocks which the police mount on a single stretch of road which sparked the rioting that happened on 4 July led by commuter omnibus drivers who, as they say, donate more than any road user per day.
Motorists have also complained that the police are imposing fines just for going through amber lights at traffic junctions, something which is allowed under the law.
Under the law, the amber light is a signal that the light is about to turn red and motorists should prepare to stop.
However, the police have been penalising motorists who were already in an intersection intending to turn and who proceed after the light turns amber.
In Harare, the police are also deployed at most intersections with Stop signs in a clear sign that they are out to raise money.
Players in tourism have also complained that the barricades are killing the industry as they are discouraging tourists from visiting the country.
Business has also joined the debate with the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC) saying the roadblocks are adversely affecting the ease of doing business.
Parliament speaker Jacob Mudenda told delegates attending the ZNCC annual congress in the resort town of Victoria Falls recently that Parliament was discussing with the Ministry of Home Affairs (Interior) to eliminate the “useless” roadblocks.
The police have announced that they will reduce the number of roadblocks in response to the public outcry.