Government revokes licence for Passion Link bus company after fatal accident; eight burnt beyond recognition, police confirm


RUSAPE – The Zimbabwean government has revoked the operating license of Passion Link Coaches after a bus accident on Sunday evening killed eight members of the Anglican Diocese of Manicaland returning from the Bernard Mizeki Annual Festival in Marondera.

Bernard Mizeki accident June 2024
The Passion Link bus had no certificate of fitness 

Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development Felix Mhona visited the accident scene and survivors at Rusape General Hospital. 

He announced the immediate license cancellation following the owner's admission that the bus lacked a certificate of fitness.

"The bus operator has openly admitted that the bus had no certificate of fitness, meaning it was not roadworthy," Mhona said. 

"A bus that does not have a certificate of fitness should not be used to ferry people, and the police will arrest both the bus owner and driver as part of the investigations."

Mhona confirmed that all buses from Passion Link Coaches would be barred from operating. 

"If they had complied with the traffic laws, which do not allow buses without a certificate of fitness to ply our roads, this accident could have been avoided," he added.

National Police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed that the accident occurred at the 26-kilometre mark along Nyabadza-Gandanza Road at around 1900 hours. 

"Eight people are suspected to have been burnt beyond recognition whilst ten others were injured when a Pashonlink bus (sic) with 65 passengers caught fire," Nyathi said.

Investigations revealed the bus caught fire after passengers noticed smoke from the engine. When the driver stopped to investigate, a ball of fire engulfed the bus. 

"The driver and 57 passengers managed to escape from the burning bus through the door and emergency exit windows," Nyathi added.

Nyathi reported that nine injured victims were admitted to Rusape General Hospital, with three treated and discharged. One victim was transferred to Victoria Chitepo Hospital in Mutare. 

DNA samples are being collected to identify the eight victims, with more details to be released in due course.

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