CHOMBA MUSIKA, Lusaka
THE Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA) is this week expected to issue a comprehensive statement on the status of Mazhandu Family Bus Service’s operating licence, which was suspended five months ago.
RTSA suspended the carrier’s licence following a spate of bus crashes resulting in deaths with the most recent killing 10 people on the Great North Road.
Mazhandu Family Bus Services immediately appealed to the Minister of Transport and Communications against the indefinite suspension of its operating licence.
In April this year, the company and RTSA entered into an agreement to have the licence restored on three conditions.
According to a Road Service Appeal Tribunal consent judgment, Mazhandu Family Bus Service was to make its vehicles available to RTSA for road worthiness inspection, and all its drivers for retesting.
The third condition was for the company to implement the workplace road safety policy of 2017 on or before May 31, 2017.
In an update yesterday, RTSA head of public relations Frederick Mubanga said the company has complied with the call to have all its fleet examined and drivers re-tested by RTSA.
“The process is on course, but the conditions have not been fully met. The workplace road safety policy is being worked on,” Mr Mubanga said.
And in a separate interview, Mazhandu Family Bus Services head of corporate finance Haswell Kalinda said the company is waiting for correspondence from RTSA over the matter.
“The licence has not been given to us and we will issue a statement after getting correspondence from RTSA,” Mr Kalinda said.
Meanwhile, the Zambia Road Safety Trust (ZRST) has commended RTSA for suspending the road service licence for Kapena Bus Company for allegedly violating the conditions of its operator’s licence.
On Friday, RTSA suspended Kapena Bus Company’s licence after one of its buses was involved in an accident last month in Luangwa district in which 19 people were killed and several others injured.
ZRST communication advisor Mailos Mwale said in a statement yesterday his organisation will support efforts that prevent reckless driving such as suspension of road service licences.