Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Walter Mzembi has condemned the high number of road blocks in Zimbabwe saying that they are stifling tourism and economic activity. Apart from complaining about the high number of road blocks, Mzembi also slated the personnel who man the road blocks. He said that the police officers who man the roadblocks have poor public relations skills as they don’t know the proper language to use when relating to members of the public.
Speaking to the Financial Gazette Mzembi said:
Remove roadblocks from our roads and put security checkpoints. If you say you have a roadblock, what are you blocking? They are blocking commerce…
Firstly, the roadblocks are too many, unbearably too many for a country that is peaceful. Secondly, the personnel are not trained in language that can engage the public.
The Minister also complained about the evasive searches carried out by the police, without regard to individuals’ rights.
What I see as searches sometimes amount to body searches. They are indecent. They should not be allowed. We still want to be able to do spot checks without infringing on personal rights. We must do a cost benefit analysis and look at the loss in citizen trust, loss in citizen goodwill
Mzembi also stressed that he will continue lobbying for the reduction in the number of roadblocks saying:
We will never stop shouting. Tourism never stops shouting because we are at the tail end of the value chain
More: Financial Gazette