Protests: Public transport grinds to a halt in Zimbabwe

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Public transport has ground to a halt in Zimbabwe as commuter omnibus operators joined a three-day stayaway on Monday, called by the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU).

Commuters who reported for work were left stranded as operators suspended their services. Most people in the Harare CBD had to walk home as shops and businesses closed by noon.

Fradreck Muguramhinga, president of the Zimbabwe Union of Drivers and Conductors, said  its members could no longer provide services as it was unsafe given the stayaway.

The union has 11,000 members in Harare.

“We are taking into account the safety and welfare of our drivers and conductors, so we have advised them to stop providing any service,” said Muguramhinga.

Across Harare there have been reports of violence and intimidation in the townships, with clashes between protesters and police.

Most roads in the townships have been barricaded with stones, notably in Kuwadzana, Mabvuku-Tafara and Glen Norah. All schools and businesses in the area have closed down.