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Traffic officials warned
Authorities in the Western Cape have received several complaints about alleged bribery of traffic officials.

Community Safety MEC Patrick McKenzie says he has received several complaints about alleged bribery of traffic officials and warned that if arrested and convicted of such a crime, they will pay a "very high price for such negative behaviour".

In a review of Transport Month and the ongoing work of the Department of Community Safety, McKenzie appealed to commuters, road users, drivers and passengers to be extra careful when on the road.

"Let us ensure that every day and night is road safety. An ideal situation is for there to be no accidents and no deaths on our roads and for us to reach this goal we must take control of our safety which means driving within the road limit, not under the influence of alcohol or drugs, no speeding and for commuters to also respect road signs and crossings designated for road users," said McKenzie.

He said road traffic law enforcement officers had a large responsibility to implement the laws which ensure safer travel.

"I want our law enforcement to at all times ensure that the safety of our road users is ensured and for this to be carried out effectively they must implement the laws of road traffic usage and safety.

"However, I am also aware of verbal complaints of alleged bribery involving police and traffic officers and, while I may not have factual evidence of such, it does not mean that either the Department of Community Safety or myself as MEC of Community Safety ignores such allegations.

"I can assure you that government treats this very seriously and we do look at strategies at eradicating corruption and bribery deals.

"I must say that this is no easy process and it starts with us as people not to be involved in bribery as this crime impacts negatively on our road and traffic safety," McKenzie said.

He appealed to law enforcement officers is to wear their badge and uniform "with respect and dignity" and not to "bring dishonour upon yourselves" by being corrupt.

"If arrested and convicted of such a crime, then you will pay a very high price for such negative behaviour."

People may report crime or corruption on 08600 10111, the Community Safety Department on 021 483 4332 or national government's toll- free number 0800 701701.

                                       This article was originally published on page 6 of Cape Times on November 04, 2008

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