A letter to Road Users Association from a South African self-drive visitor whose group spent R300 000.00 while in Zim, but thanks to rogue members of ZRP and Customs officials at Kariba, vows NEVER TO RETURN …
Good day. I have been advised to write to you and express my disgust towards the Zim Police ..A group of us have just spent two weeks in Zim.. I entered at the Kasane Border post on way to vic falls. Within two killos from the border in Zim I was stopped and fined $20 for a tail light on my trailer that was not working. New 4 x 4 Trailer ..everything was working fine, When I argued with the guy he wanted my passport and drivers licence and mentioned that things are going to get a lot worse for me if I don’t pay. I then paid the $20 but already had put a damper on the vacation. Stayed at Vic falls for a few days and then opted to go via Zambia to Kariba as driving through Zim would be a nightmare with cops .. The trip was good except for a stretch of highway that is very bad. Came into Kariba Border post.. all three vehicles … when was told to go to Interpol ..they said if I buy them all drinks they won’t search my vehicle… I declined politely. Two guys dressed in Plain clothes then wanted to search my Landy. They refused to show me any Identification. Delayed my trip by over half an hour, was not pleasant all the time angling for a bribe.
Spent some time on a house boat then went to Mana. Decided to drive back towards Plumtree Border as the road in Zambia was very bad MISTAKE – 22 road blocks. some were fine. Past Chinhoyi I was on a decline doing 60..NO road markings and HUGE pot holes on the left. I moved over to avoid a HUGE pothole and was then stopped ..FOR DRIVING ON THE WRONG SIDE OF THE ROAD..I pointed out that the Pothole was way too big ..he said I should stop and negotiate it better. Fined again. At Gweru I stopped at a traffic light ..A government vehicle drove straight through. A cop appeared and said to me my tyres were on the white line and this is illegal. He pulled me over, took my licence and then got very clever, said he was going o take my licence and go see his Boss.. at this stage I was running late for the border, which I explained to him.. He demanded $20 and said if I don’t hurry and move things are going to escalate and I could end up in jail. He never gave me a fine, just kept the $20….I did not want to take it further.
These are just a few incidents … I was told that my arm was not allowed to rest on the window..$20..My windscreen to dirty, etc., etc. Please could you let this be known … we spent over R300 000,00 on this trip.. In Zim.. Believe me, NONE of us will ever EVER go back to that country. I have written to all the travel agents that I am in contact with and 4 x 4 clubs, warning them and advising them to rather avoid Zim all together as it is so corrupt..
Totally disappointed with the affairs in a once a stunning country.
Appreciate your time.
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