DA: New transport regulations snuck through

2012-08-02 16:56

Cape Town - Transport Minister Ben Martins has "snuck through" changes to the National Road Traffic Regulations, bypassing Parliament, the DA claimed on Thursday.

"Several amendments... have been snuck through by the former (S'bu Ndebele) and the current [Martins] transport minister this year, without being referred to Parliament for comment, or allowing sufficient time for public input," Democratic Alliance MP Ian Ollis said in a statement.

Contacted for comment, ministry spokesperson Tiyani Rikhotso said the minister was empowered by Parliament to make and publish regulations, "which are not inconsistent with the act, therefore this is the minister's competency area".

He said this was done "in line with the assignment by the Constitution of various legislative competencies to the three tiers of government".

Road traffic regulations were "made in accordance" with the provisions of the National Road Traffic Act, Rikhotso said.

Regulatory guidelines ‘spurned’

Ollis said the act clearly stated that before regulations were made, the minister must refer a draft to Parliament for comment.

"The regulations must then be gazetted and accompanied by a notice calling for comment, objections or representations on the matter within the period specified within the notice, but no less than four weeks."

Ollis said examples of how regulatory guidelines had been "spurned" included:

- legislation introducing special new traffic police officers, or "peace officers", where the notice stated that interested persons had only 20 days to make representation, instead of the 28 days required by the act;

- the publication of toll tariffs for different categories of road users and classes of motor vehicles. This notice had stated that the tariffs were payable from April 30 this year, giving the public 17 days to give their thoughts on the matter; and,

- changes governing, among other things, the registration and licensing of motor vehicles. These amendments "were never brought before Parliament", and were also "cleverly published" over holiday periods, reducing the likelihood of input.

"It seems Minister Martins has decided to take up his predecessor's penchant for undermining Parliament by forcing through regulations and amendments, and skirting clause 6 of the National Road Traffic Act," Ollis said.

He would be writing to the minister, as well as the chairperson of the transport portfolio committee, Ruth Bhengu, demanding that appropriate procedures be followed.

  • chad.d.tugwell - 2012-08-02 17:10

    I'm so glad I have the opportunity to educate myself with this kind of information, it makes it so much easier to bring facts to the table than to emotionally argue over something I had no hand or experience in. I don't care about what happened, I care about now. Time for change.

      Squeegee - 2012-08-02 18:07

      Not even the best novelist could make up the stories that are our reality under the ANC...

  • david.slabbert.14 - 2012-08-02 17:11

    See the sneak on TOLL. Another under the bonnet way to force us to the Guateng tolls. Whatch this space....

  • trevor.pietersen.3 - 2012-08-02 17:19

    He wants MORE for his gravy

  • sam.brink.92 - 2012-08-02 17:39


  • J.Stephen.Whiteley - 2012-08-02 18:04

    Thank goodness for the ever-vigilant DA

  • pieriewaaier.zooms - 2012-08-02 18:31

    Soon there will be a regulation setting the speed limit for the blue light brigades at 160km/h and excempting the VIP drivers from prosecutiion for reckless driving even when people are killed or maimed for life. The ANC lead tin pot brigade in full swing!!

  • CORNHOLIO - 2012-08-02 18:56

    proof that pqtabo is an idiot:

  • chris.cunning.14 - 2012-08-03 07:24

    What did the other article say... Jackels?

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