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New Highway Toll System in Zimbabwe Pulls in US$676,000 in First Month

Tollgates recently introduced on Zimbabwe's highways collected US$676,000 in the latter part of August following their introduction, funds that will be spent repairing deteriorated roads, Transport Minister Nicholas Goche told the state-run Herald newspaper.

Goche told the Herald in an article published Thursday that US$608,000 was transferred to the Zimbabwe National Road Agency after deducting a 10% handling fee.

He said his ministry will respond to public complaints of congestion at tollgates by instituting prepaid tolls for state and company vehicles to minimize delays.

Light motor vehicles pay one U.S. dollar at toll stations while minibuses and heavy trucks pay two dollars and five dollars, respectively. The government decided to levy tolls to meet costs of upgrading highways following a series of deadly bus crashes.

Parliamentary Transport Committee Member Albert Mhlanga told reporter Sithandekile Mhlanga of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that that repairs will begin with the Beitbridge-Victoria Falls highway followed by the Beitbridge-Harare and Harare-Kariba highways.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...