Fikile Mbalula licence

Photo: GCIS/ Flickr

Fikile Mbalula – No mercy for deadly drunk drivers this December

‘Tis the season to be jolly but Fikile Mbalula warns motorists that drunk driving won’t be met with festive cheer this December.

Fikile Mbalula licence

Photo: GCIS/ Flickr

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula vows that drunk drivers will know no mercy this festive season. Furthermore, Mbalula says that alcohol consumption during peak long-distance travel poses a huge hurdle for law enforcement.

Fikile Mbalula
Fikile Mbalula warns that no mercy will be shown towards drunk drivers this festive season. Image: GCIS/ Flickr

Fikile Mbalula – Alcohol turns vehicles into deadly weapons

Drinking and driving, according to the Minister, has turned modes of transport into deadly weapons. Certianly, the politician highlighted the sad facts of the matter.

For instance, Mbalula cited research showing that around 27.1% of fatal accidents in SA were due to the driver’s intoxication.

Likewise, the same research carried out by the Medical Research Council showed pedestrians were far more likely to be the victims of drunk drivers.

“It is precisely because of this, that we emphasise the prevention of drunk driving in our road safety education and law enforcement operations. The Alcohol Evidential Centres that were handed over to the RTMC will be of great assistance to our traffic officers in arresting and prosecuting drunk drivers.”

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula

The Alcohol Evidence Centres were handed over by Mbalula on Wednesday. Similarly, the mobile units are the result of a collaboration between the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) and the Association for Alcohol Responsibility and Education.

These units will be distributed nationwide to aid law enforcement at roadblocks.

“This equipment will assist in ensuring our officers stop many drunk drivers and remove them from the roads before they cause major destruction. This hand-over signifies our zero-tolerance approach to drunk driving and lawlessness on the roads. Our message to our officers is no more excuses, Azikhale, bopha,”

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula

Alcohol vital for SA economy

Most importantly, it was noted that 365 people have already been arrested for drunk driving since the start of December.

South African Liquor Brandowners Association spokesperson Sibani Mngadi, speaking on behalf of Aware.org says the collaboration between the organisations is a success story. However, despite the challenges posed by alcohol consumption, Mngadi highlighted the economic value of the liquor trade.

“It is evident that alcohol is an integral part of the tourism and hospitality sector. The operations of restaurants and hospitality establishments become financially unviable when you remove alcohol from the menu.”