The carnage on the roads in the Eastern Cape can be reduced through targeted intervention by government.
While the efforts by government to enforce stricter bans on drinking and driving are welcomed, this effort falls short of what is required. What is needed is a focussed campaign to stamp out the lucrative but criminal business of issuing false driving licences and vehicle roadworthy certificates.
There needs to be far greater and effective law enforcement and confiscation of unroadworthy vehicles on our roads.
The Democratic Alliance will be asking for specialised funding and drastic interventions to curb driving licence- and vehicle roadworthy fraud.
I will during the upcoming budget meetings be asking the Portfolio Committee on Transport — with the department officials present — to formulate an effective plan with resources and money to curb this unsavoury practice.
Furthermore, I will in conjunction with my colleague in parliament, Ian Ollis, DA Shadow Minister of Transport, be requesting that a national intervention be undertaken in this regard.
A total ban on alcohol consumption alone as mooted by government will not be the panacea to solve our provincial road carnage.
We need to stop dishonest operators and unscrupulous syndicates. There must be harsh fines and consequences for offenders and murder charges and long jail terms for those caught issuing fraudulent licences.
It is essential that greater funding from our provincial and national fiscus be allocated to stamp out this corruption.
Also requiring urgent attention is how we deal with drunken pedestrians, who contributed to 40% of accidents on our roads this season.
Every Christmas and Easter season countless lives are lost on our roads despite well publicised campaigns for responsible driving.
The DA will continue with its efforts that these interventions become a reality in March, when the budgets of provincial departments for 2013/14 are tabled in the Bhisho Legislature.