Traffic bosses rake up speeding fines

South Africa’s top traffic bosses — Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele and the Road Traffic Management Corporation’s (RTMC) acting head Collins Letsoala — have run up a raft of fines in the past three years, City Press reported on Sunday.

Vehicles for which Ndebele and Letsoala were the registered owners have been issued with 11 fines in Pretoria and Johannesburg in the past three years, newspaper City Press reported.

Ndebele and Letsoala threatened to confiscate the driving licences of road hogs and speedsters after the carnage on the roads during the festive season.

City Press reported that official records show the traffic fines for a silver 5-series BMW registered in Ndebele’s name, drove through a camera trap at between 146km/h and 250km/h on the N1 North in Johannesburg in July 2010.

Another speeding fine issued the next day to the same vehicle, for driving between 96km/h and 100km/h in a 60km/h zone, was cancelled, the newspaper reported.

Ndebele’s spokesperson, Tiyani Rikhotso, told the newspaper the fine was probably an error that lay with the dealership where the vehicle was bought because the minister sold the car in June 2010 and had never driven it outside KwaZulu-Natal.

‘Not above the law’
Letsoala had nine fines issued against his vehicles between October 2008 and March 2011.

These included five for speeding and four parking fines for his four different vehicles.

Letsoala told the newspaper he was not the driver of the vehicles.

“I’ve got a driver who takes me around and my wife drives all those vehicles … I’ve got a lot of people driving those cars. But what I do like any ordinary law citizen, I pay all the fines under my name. I’m not above the law.”

Justice Project South Africa’s chairperson Howard Dembovsky said the fact that records show that both the speeding fines for Ndebele’s BMW and five of Letsoalo’s fines are “paid” suggested the two men had paid the fines themselves and thus admitted guilt for the traffic violations. — Sapa

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