NW traffic officers urged to be merciless with lawbreakers

Sunday, November 4, 2012
Nthambeleni Gabara

Pretoria - North West Premier Thandi Modise has urged traffic officers to show no mercy to road law offenders on the province's roads during the festive season until the end of the 2013 African Nations Cup (Afcon).

"I want to urge all traffic officers to show no mercy especially on our provincial roads. Do not show mercy to any offenders or criminals. Government will support you and know that your services are of great important to this country and the province," said Modise.

She called law enforcement agencies to work beyond the call of duty throughout the festive season until the end of the Africa Cup of Nations tournament. Rustenburg has been chosen as one of the host cities of the 2013 Afcon tournament. Ivory Coast, Tunisia, Algeria and Togo were pooled together in Group D in Rustenburg.

Modise added that while families would miss the on-duty officers, "when duty calls you must get up with pride and zest, and save lives".

She was speaking during the provincial closure of Transport Month and launch of the provincial festive season arrive alive campaign at Mmabatho Stadium in Mahikeng on Saturday. Transport Month is marked during the month of October.

"Arrive Alive and Operation When Duty Calls must be a daily call to both our police and traffic officers. We have declared the North West a crime free and accident free zone for intensified onslaught against lawlessness," she said.

The Premier said the reduction of pedestrian fatalities depended on all road users, drivers and pedestrians.

"Most pedestrians were killed either when walking along the road, crossing on unsafe areas or without looking at both directions of the roads and for the kids while playing on the road.

"We appeal to pedestrians to take precautionary measures while walking or crossing the roads. Please walk far from the road and try at all times to wear clothes which will make you visible to the drivers especially at night," she said.

Last year, a total of 96 crashes were reported from 1 December 2011 to 11 January 2012 compared with 105 for the 2010/2011 festive season.

Of these crashes, the province recorded a total of 112 fatalities which is a total reduction of 11 percent compared to 2010/11 with 127 fatalities. Speed, pedestrian negligence, abuse of alcohol by drivers and; fatigue, especially amongst public passenger drivers; vehicle fitness were the main contributory factors.

October Transport Month seeks to raise awareness of the important role of transport in the economy, and to invite participation from civic society and business, in providing a safer, more affordable, accessible and reliable transport system for the country. - SAnews.gov.za

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