17 November 2017
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Wednesday, 08 November 2017 20:41

New traffic penalties to enhance compliance to traffic rules - DRTSS

Written by  Trouble Ziba
Gondwe: The fines are within prescribed law and will help reduce accidents Gondwe: The fines are within prescribed law and will help reduce accidents

Lilongwe, November 8, 2017: The Directorate of Road Traffic and Road Safety Services (DRTSS) says its decision to revise prescribed offences, penalty and miscellaneous fees aims at raising the level of compliance to traffic regulations by motorists in the country.

The institution attributes the present frequent accidents largely to over-speeding, drink-driving, reckless driving, careless overtaking and ignoring traffic signs, among other reasons.

Speaking when the road traffic directorate held a press conference in Lilongwe Wednesday to justify amendments of its prescribed offences, penalties and miscellaneous fees, DRTSS acting Director, Fergus Gondwe, said the reason was to arrest the road accidents which have become rampant in recent years.

“Following the alarming fatalities and impact of the road accidents in 2017 and also the past trend of fatalities, Directorate of Road Traffic and Safety Services in collaboration with the Traffic Police met in June, 2017 to come up with workable interventions to reverse the escalating trends of these traffic accidents,” said Gondwe.

This week, DRTSS published a schedule of adjusted offences and penalties as well as miscellaneous fees in the print media.

According to Gondwe, some people are either not getting the messages or getting them wrongly from different sources, hence the decision to hold a media briefing to clarify misunderstandings emanating from the press release.

He said the DRTSS has statutory powers to manage, regulate control and promote road safety in the country as prescribed in the Road Traffic Act (1997), assuring the public all necessary procedures were followed in coming up with the amendments.

The DRTSS official told the media the new penalties were justifiable, looking at the huge loss of lives of productive people the country has incurred.

He parried away sentiments that DRTSS wants to raise more money by amending the penalties, saying it was about placing more deterrents to enhance compliance to traffic rules by the motorists.
“We want to stop this menace of day in-day out accidents, many people are dying,” he said.

The head of Road Traffic Department in the Police Service, Macfeson Matowe, while admitting that some people view the law enforcers as most corrupt, he said as police service, they would  not relent in enforcing traffic rules in the country to arrest the frequent accidents. 

The DRTSS new penalty and miscellaneous fees will take effect on Monday, the 13th November, 2017.

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