Obert Mpofu In Transport Tender Scandal

Cabinet has taken the Minister of Transport, Obert Mpofu to task over secret awards of major road construction and passenger transportation contracts, NOW DAILY has learnt.
Mpofu told the state media last weekend that the multi-million-dollar contract to supply a ring road around Harare had already been awarded, without going to tender.
Another concession to provide the so-called ‘train-buses’ had also been given to three companies, including one trading as Metro Buses, which has failed to import enough buses to service the Chitungwiza route due to financial incapacity.
Mpofu faced a storm in Cabinet over the rise in traffic in Harare, which has led to massive congestion. In a hastily-cobbled up “transport policy” document presented to Cabinet this week, Mpofu blamed mini-buses for the upsurge in city centre traffic. He proposed banning the ‘kombis’ with immediate effect and giving transportation contracts to Chinese investors who control much of the economy.
However, other cabinet members opposed that policy and demanded that Mpofu withdraw threats to ban kombis. To address the secret transportation awards, Mpofu has now called for small local business people to form consortia and get contracts to run high-volume buses. It was not clear if any serious transporters were taking up the challenge.
Mpofu was demoted to the transport ministry by President Robert Mugabe after billions of dollars in state diamond revenue went missing from the Marange fields. He was also accused of corruption by a parliamentary committee.


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