Kurumwa Nochokuchera

Aaron Gono

They are many proverbs which fit in to the current Mutare rank marshals and touts’ violent clash which happened on 25/05/2024, as first reported in this publication.

” Yadeuka, yadeuka mvura haiworehwe, Kurera imbwa nemukaka, mangwana inokuruma, Tsvaru akadana tivu, Rakazvirova rikazhamba, Murombo haarove chine nguvo” etc.

The proverbs can end up digressing the whole story here. I wonder why l obtained a ‘C’ in Shona at O” Level, given the chance again l will get an A+.

Touts and rank marshals are popularly known as ” mahwindi” because of their bad mouthing and use of force. They always move in packs like rats, drinking and smoking illicit products publicly.

Injured Gold Class Buses tout.

These products make them work harder, and forget all their problems. They are also the major causes of all their fights and also unrelenting humiliation of travelers.

This is always done in the presence of the police. The rank marshals and touts now occupy every street in towns. In rural areas they are found at every busy shopping centre, and not so busy ones.

In 2021, l laughed when l first saw a “lone wolf” at Mupamawonde Bus Stop ( Bikita ), demanding cash from Muchekayaora and Buhera bound taxis.

In Zimbabwe it is now a major form of informal employment, you only need to be crude and dirty to qualify to occupy and claim a certain territory as yours.

 The Zimbabwe Republic Police, see these outlaws setting foundations every day and they look the other side.

They charge exorbitant prices to travelers, which also make their turnover attractive.

In Harare at Boka make shift bus stop, rank marshals are the ” Don Corleones” of fleet management.

They gotta the power to do anything they may deem necessary to passengers. Again the police are always there looking for some rich pickings.

Touts dangerously hanging from the back a moving kombi in the CBD.

The fierce fight in Mutare has exposed the police once again, following the Beitbridge fiasco some years ago,  where touts undressed a woman, as competition to get her first and board their bus got ugly.

This incident was highly published and the police was forced to launch an operation to pacify rank marshals. The operation only lasted for 3 weeks, if my mind serves me right.

After that the touts were back in season, till the 25th of May 2024, when they started again. The long list of people who were arrested is not impressive but only whitewash.

“Kurumwa nochokuchera”, these touts took many years to establish and they are responsible for mushrooming of undesignated pick up points in urban areas. The municipality police with their limited capacity have failed to stop them.

“Our police only act when it is given an order from Harare PGHQ or when they are important people in town. Now we are harvesting what we sow.

“Yadeuka, yadeuka mvura haihorerwe,” it is now late to tame the jungle, but the jungle to tame us. The damage the street money changers had done to the economy is just the same as these touts are doing.

Their wages are not taxed. Passengers and drivers of commuter omni buses are now slaves to these outlaws. It needs a holistic approach to rid this system of our backs.

“Kurera imbwa nomukaka…”, these guys were given too much leverage by the police and now we are harvesting thorns and them eating the lunches of bus operators willy nilly. They overcharge passengers and share the spoils amongst themselves.

“Tsvaru akadana tivu”, these guys started small and became big, organized and strong. Unfortunately our police befriended them in order to get some tips. Now the damage is incalculable and we are trapped.

“Rakazvirova rikazhamba”, now it appears our police are reactionary rather than being pre-emptive. Trying to be ahead of the chaos when they are distant back and directly benefitting from the stampede. Who is fooling who?

” Murombo haarove chinenguvo”, if the Commissioner General of Police means business like our Exchequer, touts will be a  thing of  the past like money changers. Then they will again resort to begging.

Touts pushing and shoving a commuter at Rezende Bus terminus.

When travelers plan their journeys, they are aware of the mode of transport they wanna travel in comfort with.

 Most buses have placards in front written their destinations, and l don’t think many Zimbos can not make sense out of Ha-ra- re or Ma-svi-ngo.

So ” mahwindi awusuke dhuze.” You are not in the chain. A bus must only have a driver, conductor and loader, not a convoy of inane school drop outs, vachibvongodza muto.

Indictment of big names , Zimbabweans are used to that , we only ask the responsible authorities to do the right thing” Get rid of rank marshals and touts, once and for all.”

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