UPDATED: Leased equipment impacts positively on NRZ operations

Mr Nyasha Maravanyika

Mr Nyasha Maravanyika

Oliver Kazunga, Senior Business Reporter
EQUIPMENT received by the National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) under an interim solution pending the $400 million recapitalisation project, has started impacting positively on the organisation’s operations, an official said.

The parastatal is leasing 13 locomotives, 200 wagons and seven locomotives from South African rail utility, Transnet as a stop gap measure under an agreement with the Diaspora Infrastructure Development Group (DIDG)/ Transnet consortium.

“All the 200 wagons have been put to dedicated use for chrome exports from the Zimbabwe Iron and Mining Company (Zimasco) Kildonan in Mashonaland Central and Zimasco Kwekwe to Maputo.

“Chrome exports utilising the first batch of wagons started on March 29,” said NRZ public relations manager Mr Nyasha Maravanyika in a statement.

He, however, said the 151 wagons released under the first batch could not be put into service soon after they were received by NRZ because of an embargo on loadings at Maputo port due to an acute shortage of loading space.

“The remaining 49 wagons were availed to the NRZ on April 20. Since deployment chrome producers have managed to reduce stockpiles of chrome as the gap between demand and the product uplifted is reduced,” he said.

Mr Maravanyika said NRZ was now able to also meet demand for its wagons from other customers. In the case of clinker, the parastatal has 253 wagons dedicated to clinker movement while the customer was requesting an average of 100 wagons a week.

On the passenger side, he said the NRZ was pleased to note passenger coaches leased from Transnet were proving to be popular with passengers. “The coaches were deployed on the Bulawayo-Victoria Falls route and started operating on March 28, 2018. From that time the NRZ has witnessed an increase in patronage on its passenger train on that route,” he said.

Mr Maravanyika said there has also been a significant rise in passenger figures with an average 300 people boarding the train daily compared to 240 recorded before their deployment.

“NRZ is leasing the coaches from Transnet to complement those owned by the parastatal as it seeks to reposition itself as a transporter of choice with the travelling public on inter-city routes.

“The passenger services offer a number of advantages over road transport,” he said.

“These include safe travel, affordable fares and comfort in the sleeper and standard coaches while dining cars are available on some routes.” Under its $400 million recapitalisation project with DIDG/Transnet consortium, NRZ will acquire rolling stock, signalling equipment and information communication technology equipment to increase capacity utilisation.

The NRZ system has a design capacity to move 18 million tonnes of freight a year but is moving just over three million tonnes and the recapitalisation programme is expected to improve freight volumes.  — @okazunga

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  • QB

    We want new railway lines, the Rhodesian railway lines are now a hazard to our lives. Locomotives fall time and again because of damaged Rhodesian railway lines.

    • Mthulisi

      You lied on your Cv, I’ll give your comment 0

    • Galveston

      You might just be in luck mate. Chamisa has promised to introduce a new railway system that employs modern high speed trains between the main cities and resorts. There’s a catch to this though ….. his promise is only applicable if he wins the elections.

  • Galveston

    Looks good on paper; but as long as NRZ employee wages are still in arrears, it will be wrong to boast about positive development at the national haulier. Last time I checked, such arrears spanned over several months. It is these employees in the lower structures who are the major factor in bringing about the turn around which will put NRZ back on the rails again. The employees will only be able to give a 100% in skills, energy and loyalty when their welfare is taken care of expeditiously and with due commitment.

    • Nomthandazo

      Galveston, how about trying a new career as a Beyoncé impersonator.

      • Galveston

        Nice; but that wouldn’t work for reasons to do with age, gender and bodily dimensions.

        • Nomthandazo

          At least go and try, you’ll be much useful that side and your contributions valued, than to be talking nonsense on this forum.

          • Galveston

            Interesting observation. Yet I’ve generally noticed that what may appear to be nonsense to some will be seen as valuable to others. So speak for yourself concerning your opinion about the quality of my comments. By the way, it’s a pity about your challenging command of the English language. Why don’t you try writing in the vernacular provided this is in Ndebele or Zulu. Don’t bother with the others; I don’t understand or speak them.

          • Nomthandazo

            What English, as long as you got the message. Your comments are crap,sorry I won’t bit around the bush.

          • Galveston

            See what I mean? The correct English language expression is “beating about the bush.” So you see; I am right about your command of the English language being a little “beat” off!