Herald Reporter
Zupco has been appointed to co-ordinate urban public transport but does not have a monopoly since all transport operators can register with Zupco and provide services, Local Government and Public Works Minister July Moyo told Parliament yesterday.

Government had rationalised the urban transport system but any owner of a bus or kombi in urban areas could register with Zupco since the Government was not intending to exclude private operators.

Minister Moyo was responding to questions in the National Assembly from backbenchers who wanted to know why other operators were not allowed to provide urban public transport. They accused the Government of creating a monopoly for Zupco.

“We have rationalised the urban transport system. We have given an opportunity to everyone with a bus or kombi in the urban areas to come and register with Zupco. The choice of Zupco does not create a monopoly that excludes other operators. We are clear on what we want to achieve,” said Minister Moyo.

Responding to another question, Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Joel Biggie Matiza said most long-distance bus operators were complying with the Government directives on how to provide inter-city services after Cabinet approved the resumption of these services.

Operators, including taxis, could resume operating subject to strict compliance to Covid-19 regulations.

Responding to another question, Health and Child Care Deputy Minister John Mangwiro said there was no need re-test those who tested positive to Covid-19 when they had no symptoms or when their condition was improving.

It had been established and agreed by scientists and the World Health Organisation that after eight or 10 days the virus causing Covid-19 would have died down thereby removing the need for a retest. He was responding to a question on why people were deemed as negative even without a retest.

“We know that after eight or 10 days the virus would have died down. It would therefore be futile to retest that person especially when he or she is showing signs of recovery or when there are no symptoms,” said Deputy Minister Mangwiro.

Government remained the major provider of testing for Covid-19 although it still allowed private facilities to test given the intensity of the pandemic. “In a pandemic like this you cannot stop a private facility from testing. But the Government provides about 80 percent of testing,” said Deputy Minister Mangwiro.

Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said all was on course for the reopening of schools. The necessary personal protective equipment was being mobilised on time for the reopening of schools.