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‘Road Accident Fund in the pipeline’

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Zvamaida Murwira Senior Reporter
Government plans to introduce a Road Accident Fund aimed at assisting victims of road carnage that continue to claim lives, a Cabinet minister has said.

Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Dr Joram Gumbo said third party insurance was one avenue to compensate road accident victims, but had not helped matters as it was exacerbated by the proliferation of fake insurance policies.

Dr Gumbo said this in the National Assembly while giving a ministerial statement on the recent road accident along the Harare-Bulawayo highway involving a bus and Mercedes-Benz sprinter that claimed 31 lives and was declared a national disaster.

He said third party insurance was being administered privately by insurance companies hence his ministry could not comment substantively on the actual amount being collected periodically.

In other countries, said Dr Gumbo, third party insurance was administered by Government, but in Zimbabwe’s case, there had been reliance on insurance companies as agents since the colonial era.

“I have already advised Cabinet of my efforts to set up a Road Accident Fund and I will submit the paper to that effect to Cabinet in the next four weeks. Allow me, therefore, at this stage to defer discussions on this proposal which I am consulting relevant stakeholders as I prepare it,” said Dr Gumbo.

He said the Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe should, in terms of the law, get 12 percent of every third party insurance policy issued per term for promotion of road safety and not compensation, which he said was the responsibility of insurance companies.

TSCZ collected an average of $224 000 per term or $2,688 million per year.

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