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Mixed reaction to signing of Aarto Bill

Cosatu said that the signing of the Aarto Bill by President Cyril Ramaphosa would reduce the carnage on the country's roads.

FILE: A Johannesburg Metro Police officer writes a parking ticket outside the Johannesburg High Court. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Tripartite alliance partner Cosatu said that the signing of the Aarto Bill by President Cyril Ramaphosa would reduce the carnage on the country's roads.

Ramaphosa signed the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences Bill last week, which will be implemented once the law has been gazetted.

Cosatu said that on average, 14,000 South Africans died every year on our roads due to reckless driving.

Cosatu's Matthews Parks: "The situation is a crisis, not only are families losing their breadwinners and relatives but it has a massive impact on the economy. Billions of rands are lost every year because of the high levels of road carnage. It also bleeds the Road Accident Fund which has a R149 billion deficit and the Road Accident Fund itself is dragging the economy because we have to fund it."

FINES VIA SOCIAL MEDIA

Meanwhile, the Justice Project South Africa said that the Aarto Amendment Act could see motorists being fined electronically through social media platforms Instagram, Facebook and WhatsApp.

The law will see motorists being compelled to adhere to a de-merit system - a point system which could see drivers lose their licenses or have them suspended after 12 traffic offences.

Concerns have been raised that the changes would cost motorists more to challenge fines.

Justice Project South Africa's Howard Dembovskie said that there would be huge administration burdens.

"You could be fined via Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, you name it and that will be considered as valid service. The really interesting part of the definition of electronic service is that it refers to the Electronic Transactions and Communications Act. Service by email is deemed to have been effected if the email is sent to the address specified at by the sender."

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