WATCH: Zimbabwe's only commuter train provides key economic lifeline

2019-02-10 13:02
Train tracks. (Photo: Getty/Gallo Images)

Train tracks. (Photo: Getty/Gallo Images)

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Chugging through townships, maize fields and scrubland as the sun rises, Zimbabwe's only commuter train is cheap and reliable - two qualities that its passengers cherish in a downwards-spiralling economy.

Watch video above

Each morning sleepy travellers walk to the tracks and clamber aboard before the train leaves the Cowdray Park settlement at 06:00 on its 20-kilometre journey into Bulawayo, the country's second city.

This service was suspended for 13 years under former president Robert Mugabe's rule and was only revived in November.

Zimbabwe - once known as the breadbasket of Africa - saw its economy crippled during Mugabe's decades-long rule, contributing to his downfall in 2017.

Despite new leadership under President Emmerson Mnangagwa, the cost of living has continued to skyrocket, boosting demand for the newly-reinstated train from commuters desperate to make it to work.

Read more on:    robert mugabe  |  emmerson mnangagwa  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa

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