Lawlessness on roads worsens as traffic officers’ shifts cut

Issued by Marshall von Buchenroder, MPL
Shadow MEC for Roads and Transport

Eastern Cape road users are being left to fend for themselves, as provincial traffic officers are no longer working the 6am to 2pm shift on Saturdays and Sundays.

The Eastern Cape’s roads have become lawless frontiers where people ignore traffic laws in the absence of law enforcement.

We are the only province in the country that does not have a 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week provincial traffic law enforcement programme in place. Instead of addressing this as a matter of urgency, it seems the Department is cutting back even more shifts to save money.

MEC Xolile Nqatha must explain to the people of the Eastern Cape how he intends to bring adequate road law enforcement to the province.

We need more visible law enforcement officers on our roads, 24/7, who should be adequately equipped to deal with the challenges we are facing in the province.

It is simply unacceptable that emergency medical staff are being forced to direct traffic, to attend to victims and prevent further loss of life at accident scenes, simply because the Department refuses to pay overtime or appoint additional officers.

I have today submitted questions to MEC Nqatha to explain how this situation came about, and to provide details surrounding overtime, the supposed standby list used to cover this period as well as whether these standby officials actually respond to call outs, and if so what the turnaround times are.

The DA will continue to fight for proper law enforcement on our roads, as these laws have been put in place to save lives and make our transport networks safer for all road users