As the Festive Season gets underway, traffic safety and road fatalities will once again be in the spotlight. Unfortunately, road accidents will make this a time of great sadness, instead of a time of celebration, for many families.
This also has a devastating impact on the economy, as the loss of life and injury comes at a very high cost.
Between 1 December last year and January 15, 173 accidents occurred on the roads, with 213 lives lost. This is simply unacceptable. One life lost is a life too many.
Freedom means being able to use roads without the fear of unlawful road users whose behaviour puts their own lives and those of others in danger.
People must be given the opportunity to get into a vehicle knowing that there is proper law enforcement on the roads, 24-hours a day. A safe and secure transport network is necessary for a growing economy.
I would like to commend the MEC on the number of visible traffic law enforcement officers on our roads. The MEC and responsible officials must keep this momentum throughout the festive season, and also ensure that law and order is maintained at all times.
The Democratic Alliance is committed to implementing stricter penalties for drivers who disobey the rules of the road and the policing of vehicles, such as those that transport learners, as well as overloaded trucks, in order to reduce road accidents.
I urge Eastern Cape road users to be vigilant on our roads over the festive season. Be aware and help save lives.