JOHANNESBURG – It is with interest and not a small amount of bewilderment that JPSA has learned that SANTACO president Jabulani Mthembu has stated in public that his organisation supports the call by transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele to lower the speed limits on national freeways from 120km/h to 100km/h. (http://www.timeslive.co.za/local/2011/09/23/taxi-drivers-endorse-low-speed-limit).
What is most surprising about his apparent attempt to suck up to the Minister is that he seems to be blissfully ignorant of the fact that a speed limit of 100km/h on national freeways already applies to ALL of his members’ vehicles as well as busses!
Every single day we hear about another fatal minibus taxi crash and every single day other road users; including pedestrians and minibus taxi passengers themselves have to contend with taxi drivers breaking almost every traffic law that exists. Only today, another 16 school children have been injured (some seriously) in yet another minibus taxi crash in Kwa-Zulu Natal.
What is almost more surprising to learn that KwaZulu-Natal Transport MEC Willies Mchunu seems to also be equally oblivious as his colleagues are that the speed limit with respect to that class of vehicle (minibus taxis) already exists when he similarly supports these calls for a reduction in speed limits and says “every week we have been losing more than 10 lives in one accident.”
Whilst it has become customary for people to not practice what they preach, Mr Mthembu’s efforts would be way better spent getting his members to comply with the basics of existing laws rather than coming forward with hypocritical statements about other motorists who are subjected to the grossly delinquent and homicidal behaviour of his members and others in the minibus taxi industry.
Surely all of these people are not ignorant enough to think that reducing the speed limit applicable light motor vehicles on national freeways is going to make any difference to the compliance of minibus taxis with speed limits and traffic laws. Then again, apparently they are.
Don’t fool yourself, ignorance and reckless driving kills!
National Chairman – Justice Project South Africa (NPC)