Outa plans to challenge the Aarto Amendment Act

JOHANNESBURG, August 16 (ANA) - The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) said on Friday it planned to mount a legal challenge against the amendment of the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences (Aarto) Act.

President Cyril Ramaphosa earlier this year assented to and signed the Aarto Amendment Bill, making it law. The law will be implemented once it has been gazetted with a commencement date.

The Act sets up a demerit system for drivers, who lose points for traffic offences, which may result in the loss of a driving licence.

Rudie Heyneke, Outa portfolio manager on transport, said they had held a workshop to consult the industry on the Bill, made submissions to Parliament based on this and, after the Bill had been passed by Parliament, had written twice to the President asking him not to sign it.

"Outa has opposed this Bill from the start and is now planning a constitutional challenge to it," Heyneke said in a statement. 

The organisation called for the Bill to be amended due to concerns that it would not improve road safety, it is logistically cumbersome to the point of being potentially unconstitutional, and paves the way for corruption.

But Heyneke said the final version of the law had not taken into consideration its concerns, saying that pilot projects in Tshwane and Johannesburg using this system over the past decade had failed.

Heyneke also said Outa was concerned that the new Act would be used to force Gauteng motorists to pay e-tolls by making it an offence to ignore road signs which could include those listing e-toll charges.

"The focus should be on road safety, not on an administratively complicated system aimed at collecting revenue," Heyneke said. 

"We need solutions on road safety, but this isn’t one of them. We want to see a workable law."

- African News Agency

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