Zim mulls Road Accident Fund

Zvamaida Murwira Harare Bureau
THE government plans to introduce a Road Accident Fund aimed at assisting victims of road carnage, a cabinet minister has said.

Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister 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.

Gumbo said this in the National Assembly while giving a ministerial statement on the recent road accident along Harare-Bulawayo Road 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 Gumbo, third party insurance was administered by the government, but in Zimbabwe’s case, there had been reliance on insurance companies as agents since the colonial era.

“I’ve already advised Cabinet of my efforts to set up a Road Accident Fund and I’ll 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. I’m consulting relevant stakeholders as I prepare it,” said 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.

“Of late the TSCZ has had problems in collecting the 12 percent levy from insurance companies mainly because the industry has been plagued by fake insurance policies, while in some cases insurance companies are not complying with the requirements to remit money.

“Regrettably, the TSCZ has no garnishee powers to get the money from the bank accounts of defaulting insurance companies,” he said.

The government planned to introduce electronic insurance cover notes, a project that would ensure that insurance companies were linked to the database of Zinara and the Central Vehicle Registry. This would ensure that no vehicle would get a vehicle licence without a valid insurance policy.

“The system has already been designed and is expected to be operational in the next three months,” he said.

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  • Mpisi

    Instead of working at addressing the causes of accident , our govt thinks of coming up with a fund? Shocking!
    Words fail me!!!

  • Max

    Accident fund, my foot. All we saying here let accidents happen, let people be killed through human error, negligence and corruption by VID, traffic police and the judiciary, we will bury the bodies through a fund. Why provide condoms for STI’s and HIV; why provide anti malaria tablets, why immunize children: it is because we don’t want to loose lives. Life lost anywhere, anyhow still remains sacred. Do you mean to say the nation has lost it all, we have no strategies to curb road carnage, why not ask for opinions from caring road users. Kunini sakhuluma ngecorruption, kunini sakhuluma nga Honda fit with no permits to carry passengers as public transporters, all falls on deaf ears. All the law makers think is the way foward is to come up with a road accident fund as if addressing a natural disaster, oh yea, inga zvakaoma sure.

    • benjamin

      You don’t find anything reasonable or logical coming out of these brains. To them, this accident probably comes as a blessing in disguise to find ways of making money. Road Accident Fund…

  • chigavazira

    this fund is okay and also roads should be dualised

  • Mkhusto

    Why do we need an insurance policy for a traffic reg license.its because u are the owners of these insurance companies who are liars and cheats. I am yet to hear of insurance companies that have paid for the injuries etc. Why not cancel requirements on insurance policy and let it be one’s choice. Why not get a percentage from license renewals and toll gates. Useless government