The DA will write to the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Transport, Ms Dikeledi Magadzi, to request that she urgently summon the new Minister of Transport, Joe Maswanganyi, to explain, in detail, why there has been an alarming 51% increase in road deaths despite millions spent on numerous road safety campaigns.
The Minister must also detail exactly what campaigns were set up to try curb road deaths, how much these campaigns cost and further, why they have been so terribly unsuccessful.
Minister Maswanganyi today announced that 235 people died, over just five days, on roads in South Africa over this year’s Easter break. This means that 79 more people died this year than the 156 people that died over the same period last year.
The fact of the matter is that every year, the Department of Transport through the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC), persists with the same approach in an attempt to bring down road deaths. It is the very definition of insanity to do the same thing over and over again expecting a different outcome.
By their own admission, matched by independent studies, the RTMC admitted to the portfolio committee that the biggest issues contributing to deaths on our roads are moving violations, faulty brakes and smooth tyres yet their campaign addresses absolutely none of this.
The RTMC needs to follow international best practice because stopping vehicles to check for licenses on its own does not contribute to road safety as the statistics clearly indicate.
South Africans should be empowered with information on road safety by effective campaigns which will have a better chance of decreasing the unacceptably high number of people lost on our roads over the Easter holiday specifically, and throughout the year generally.
The DA will continue to push for the Department of Transport to account for their inability to implement more effective road safety campaigns, which would go a long way to reduce this unacceptably high loss of life.
Issued by DA