OUTA plans to challenge the AARTO Amendment Act
President Cyril Ramaphosa has assented to and signed the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences Amendment Bill, making it law. Implementation now awaits the law being gazetted with a commencement date.
“The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) has opposed this Bill from the start and is now planning a constitutional challenge to it,” says Rudie Heyneke, OUTA Portfolio Manager on Transport. OUTA held a workshop to consult the industry on the Bill, made submissions to Parliament based on this and, after the Bill was passed by Parliament earlier this year, wrote twice to the President asking him not to sign it.
OUTA called for the Bill to be amended, due to concerns that it would not improve road safety, it is logistically cumbersome to the point of being potentially unconstitutional, and paves the way for corruption. The final version of the law does not take into consideration OUTA’s concerns.
Pilot projects in Tshwane and Johannesburg using this system over the past decade failed.
“The focus should be on road safety, not on an administratively complicated system aimed at collecting revenue,” says Heyneke.
The Act sets up a demerit system for drivers, who lose points for traffic offences, which may result in the loss of a driving licence.
OUTA is also concerned that the new Act will be used to force Gauteng motorists to pay e-tolls, by making it an offence to ignore road signs which could include those listing e-toll charges.
“We need solutions on road safety, but this isn’t one of them. We want to see a workable law,” says Heyneke.
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