The Road Freight Association (RFA) has not yet studied the full order of the Court and the reasoning for its judgement. It is however interesting that the High Court finds the initial Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences (AARTO) Act (Act 46 of 1998) unConstitutional.
The Bill (before it became the AARTO Act 46 of 1998) passed Constitutional scrutiny then.
The fact that the High Court finds the AARTO Amendment Act (Act 4 of 2019) unConstitutional is not surprising, as there were many major changes made to the original Act.
We will have to see what the Department of Transport plans to do in terms of appealing the judgement.
The Association supports road safety, the role that traffic policing must play in increasing safety, as well as compliance with the various legislative requirements to support safer roads for all users.
The RFA has been very clear and outspoken about the flaws that the Association identified in AARTO that, in our view, were predicated on revenue generation and not on changing driver behaviour and vehicle maintenance to ensure safer roads.
We trust that the Minister of Transport will consider more effective, targeted, sustainable and implementable solutions to reduce road traffic crashes.
Over the 2020/2021 Festive Season, the number and severity of road crashes was dramatically reduced – without AARTO being in place.
The use of resources to specifically target known causes proved that a complicated system of demerit points, administration of drivers and vehicles regarding point thresholds and the payment of levies and penalties to facilitate “swifter administration” of traffic law obedience, is not necessary.
The RFA supports the non-implementation of a system that would have created administrative labour and cost nightmares for all South African drivers – and more so any company that operates a fleet.
By Gavin Kelly – Chief Executive Officer: The Road Freight Association