Festive clampdown on taxi speedsters

Mhlaba Memela

Mhlaba Memela

KwaZulu-Natal taxi drivers with records of serial traffic law offences may find themselves on the wrong side of the law if they continue with their bad ways.

The provincial traffic inspectorate announced at the weekend that it was compiling a database of the industry's serial offenders, to enable it to deal with the offenders in line with new powers granted to the state.

Recently a court ruling gave the government the power to confiscate vehicles belonging to serial traffic law offenders.

In terms of the new ruling the state has the power to auction the confiscated vehicles.

The proceeds from the sale will be used to fund the victims of road accidents.

The province is set to implement the law during the coming festive season because they are expecting a flood of holidaymakers in the province.

Willy Mbhense, spokesman for the KwaZulu-Natal Transport Alliance, said: "We have never studied the court ruling but we feel it will affect the industry negatively. We employ drivers and we do not know what they do on the roads."

But Mbhense said his organisation welcomed the ruling "as long is in line with strategies to eliminate road accidents".

Kwazi Mbanjwa, a spokesman for the provincial transport department, said offenders who own bank financed vehicles will still be liable for repayment even after the cars are confiscated.

Mbanjwa said: "The law does not discriminate. Whether it is taxi operators or private vehicles, the same thing will apply.

"People should think twice before breaking the law.

"We are tired of people who turn vehicles into weapons on the road."