Fast track Courts for traffic offenses

Dear Editor,

RATSAI wish to express my concerns about the announced fast track courts that are likely to start for traffic offences soon.

It is with great dismay and disappointment that our government does not seem to see that it is pressing its citizenry to the wall so much in many areas, and has chosen to offer a deaf ear to all cries of its people.

The announcement that RATSA will introduce fast track courts to handle traffic offences and sentence offenders to weekend jail terms is such one issue that deserve government attention urgently before it is introduced.

This will by no means help stop traffic offences but encourage more corruption among traffic officers who have now become society dons with big posh cars and houses in low density residential areas due to corruption.

Who doesn’t know about this terrible trait in our officers? It is an open secret that all police officers fight to get into the traffic division due to these day light robberies they perform reaping where they did not sow.

Allowing these so corrupt officers to enforce such a law is like giving them a weapon to extort more from the poor citizenry who of cause would pay through their noses to avoid weekend jail terms.

I agree with the TV statement from the Flash Mini Bus Management that this is a bad law meant to encourage corruption among police traffic officers and must be stopped forthwith. There are many options government can use to penalize traffic offenders and also reduce RTAs than this.

One way would be by reducing the traffic charges to minimum amounts, say K10 for defective lights, tyres or so and K50 for other bigger offences. This would work this way; With the low charges, start computerized pay points similar to the ones for ZESCO where offenders can make payments after receiving charge sheets and not paying to police officers directly.

When one is issued a charge sheet, they are allowed to pay at any pay pints within a space of 14 days and upon paying the charge sheet automatically cancels in the system and reflects at the treasury as paid, failure to which a red alert is issued for that particular car.

The police is then instructed to impound the car no compromise or payment at this stage until the offender pays K1000 directly to the treasury or the car is auctioned after 90 days of failure to pay this amount.

People would rather pay their charges than risk their cars auctioned and also the treasury will benefit since all collections will be recorded than is the situation now where all revenue is pocketed by officers.

Then with the introduction of the toll fees, government can use this revenue together with that from the toll fees to upgrade and make new safer roads worth the mention.

Probably the Toll gates should be entrusted to private companies that can manage and implement government approved road infrastructure upgrades and construction.

This is my view and contribution on this issue, and I hope it will be of some help to our mother nation.

Berbosco Kayembi Muzwidi