THE Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (Zupco) said yesterday its privatisation is on course as private investors have shown interest.

Acting chief executive officer Evaristo Madangwa told New Ziana that the parastatal was close to securing a private partner to revive its operations.

“Zupco is about to be partially privatised so we are actually in the process of securing a private partner.

“There are people who have expressed interest in partnering Zupco so that process is happening as we speak so maybe in the next two or so weeks we will be able to know where we are,” he said.

“But yes, that process is happening where we are looking for a private partner because remember we were ear-marked for partial privatisation,” he added.

Zupco is reeling from a $16.1 million debt which it expects the government to temporarily warehouse in order to dean up its balance sheet as it pursues a partial privatisation process.

The bus operator, once the major public transport operator in the 1980’s and 90’s, is teetering on the brink of collapse due to several challenges chiefly lack of capital.

Recently Zupco, which has 22 operational buses, partnered with some private players to ferry urban commuters at a reasonable fare. Under the deal, Mr Madangwa, said, Zupco provides the buses with fuel at market rate while retaining the daily proceeds for sharing with transport operators.newziana