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Aarto made roads more dangerous

The failure of the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences Act (AARTO) is proof of the ANC government's inability to execute a law of this magnitude, says Adv. Anton Alberts, parliamentary spokesman on transport for the FF Plus.

Adv. Alberts said today with the Second Reading Debate of the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences Amendment Bill, that the intention with the law was to promote road safety. However, under the ANC it changed into a bureaucratic quagmire while road accidents and deaths increases.

He said there are two reasons for this state of affairs:

“Firstly, the law itself is not carried out by the AARTO authorities. If law enforcement agencies cannot even comply with their own mandatory law, it is no wonder that road users will not respect the law either. We have seen a fines service provider, Fines4U, obtain a court order against the Road Traffic Infringement Agency (RTIA). The verdict was damnatory in so far as it was decided that the agency did not take into account the application of the AARTO Act.

“We have over time witnessed how the AARTO authorities would act outside of the parameters of the Act by sending infringement notices by normal post, by setting up road blocks and threatening road users with arrest if they do not pay their fines immediately and consistently breach the time limits imposed to send out infringement notices without cancelling any irregular notices.

“All of these activities are ultra vires to the AARTO Act, yet authorities continue to bully road users to make payments. The Fines4U judgment has raised the prospect that most AARTO notices issued since the inception of the test stages in Gauteng, are possibly ultra vires, which opens the RTIA up for a class action based on unlawful enrichment.

“It is quite insightful that to date no AARTO court has been set up to adjudicate referred notices, which means that all those notices run into an administrative dead end that inevitably makes them null and void and unenforceable.

“The second reason of the abysmal failure of the AARTO Act is that the driving public have become aware of the RTIA’s non-compliance with the Act. In a revolt akin to that of the e-tolls, many road users have simply started to ignore any infringement notices.

“As the AARTO Act is not working and the Criminal Procedure Act is not used to police National Road Traffic infringements, no proper policing takes place. The driving public, being aware of this, have now modified their driving behaviour to those operating within a lawless environment. Thus, the increase in reckless driving.

“Therefore, the changes now proposed are senseless. We know that the AARTO Act will continue to fail when it comes to its implementation. It is time that the ANC acknowledges that it cannot execute a complex piece of legislation like AARTO,” says adv. Alberts.

 

Contact numbers: 082 391 3117 / 065 801 7216

 

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