I AM compelled to conclude that overloading minibuses in Lusaka is an illegal norm.
Each minibus can typically carry 22 people, inclusive of the driver and conductor! Some minibuses have improvised seats in form of stools and containers to maximise carrying capacity.
The conductor stands automatically. In recent incidences from Meanwood Ndeke to Chelston, there could be four people in the front row with the driver!! How? My concern is not really comfort, but safety of passengers in two regards.
The first being hygiene because some of these buses seldom have windows at the back. Secondly in case of an emergency, no chance of escape!
Just under two months ago, a lady suffered some form of attack in which she was struggling to breathe.
It was difficult to assist her even to just take her out of the bus when it eventually stopped in Phase 1 of Meanwood Ndeke, where she was put on a taxi and taken to a clinic.
Could those entrusted with public transport safety act quickly to curtail the illegal norm.