The Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences (AARTO) Bill of 1998 is in the process of being amended. The decision to amend the Bill was passed by the National Assembly and will now be signed off by the President.
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This amendment, although aimed at transforming the roads will see the long awaited implementation of the demerit system and the Appeals Tribunal.
Minister of Transport, Joe Maswanganyi said in a press briefing that this amendment is a step in the right direction.
“South Africa has been experiencing a tremendous loss of lives, especially of young people, as well as the continued disregard of road traffic laws,” said Maswanganyi.
The aim is to use this amendment as a way to decrease the number of fatalities on South Africa’s roads.
The amended bill has been on a trial period since 2008 in Tshwane and parts of Johannesburg.
What does the Amended Bill include?
Along with all the usual traffic rules and regulations, AARTO aims to:
Implement a demerit system;
Establish an Appeals Tribunal for motorists to appeal their infringements;
Make vehicle owners responsible for any infringement, even if someone else is driving;
Removal of Section 21. This means that the confiscation of drivers license, disc or impounding of a vehicle is no longer allowed.
The Minister has encouraged the government to support the amendment. He believes that the demerit system, especially, will provide drivers with a sense of ownership.
“Those that continue to break the laws, will find themselves ultimately losing their driving licences through suspensions and cancellations of their driver's licenses. We must remember that a driving licence always belongs to the government and everyone that wants to exercise this benefit, must comply with the conditions related there.”
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