Government has commended the media and the public for the tremendous support rendered in curbing the misuse of government vehicles.
Minister of Works and Supply, Felix Mutati said the general public together with the media have been collaborating well in reporting any misuse of government vehicles leading to the positive gains in terms of compliance which is now in the range of 85 percent as compared to the previous below 10 percent.
He said the media is very critical in the exercise especially that it has been able to show some of the actions of the patrols on television as well as in the newspaper which the general public has been following hence, making them join the crusade.
Mr. Mutati reiterated that the primary objective is to save the tax payers’ money and stop people from using the vehicles aimlessly adding that, whatever is being collected is being channeled to other needy programmes.
The Minister pointed out that since the exercise commenced, government has been able to save approximately K394 million and gave credit to the civil servants for adhering to the rules.
He also stated that the positive response to volunteerism from the general public is impressive as it shows that the people are desirous to do more in helping government save the resources and assets.
On the issue of the Toll-Free Line 3003 which was launched last month, Mr. Mutati said the partnership with Zamtel is paying off as the level of enthusiasm to report on misuse has been significant.
Mr. Mutati revealed that so far, more than 765 calls have been received by Government Control Unit and are being processed accordingly.
He described the responses as the right signal that shows that people have taken up the ownership of the facility and the programme as the phone calls are coming from all parts of the country covering all districts.
On the question of the withdrawal of personal-to-holder vehicles, Mr. Mutati said in the past three years, government had spent over K414 million in replacement of motor vehicles for senior government officers adding that, with the current situation, the move is a good cost saving measure.
He said the trend has now changed as all motor vehicles that are being used by senior government officials will now be utility vehicles and cannot be bought once one leaves office like it used to be in the recent past.
Mr. Mutati added that, Government Transport Control Unit is on the move to embrace technology so as to enhance the control of motor vehicles.
And Controller of Government Transport, Ernest Kunda is appealing to all citizens that have bought vehicles from government to stop using GRZ number plates so as to avoid being inconvenienced as officers carry out patrols.
Mr. Kunda said his Unit will not relent with patrols and that anyone found using the GRZ number plate on a vehicle that has been bought will have them ripped off on the spot.
He said continuing to use the GRZ number plates on vehicles deprives government of its revenue through road license and road tax which is supposed to be paid to RTSA.
Mr. Kunda has since urged the public to comply.
This is according to a press statement made available to ZANIS by Ministry of Works and Supply Public Relations Officer Ndubi Mvula in Lusaka.