Friday, August 23, 2013

Police should find out the real reasons why so many summonses are issued and unsettled.



Media Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on Friday, August 23, 2013

Police should find out  the real reasons why so many summonses are issued and unsettled.

Yesterday, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said he was not satisfied with the recent Ops Selamat during the Hari Raya period, and he believes the attitude of motorists has not changed

He announced that the police will take stern action against 1.7 million blacklisted drivers, who failed to settle their traffic summonses under Ops Warta.

He also announced that the police are working with the Road Transport Department to suspend the licenses of blacklisted motorists, starting with motorcyclists and drivers of commercial vehicles.

The failure of many drivers to settle their summonses is not a new issue and is certainly an issue that needs to be addressed.

There is also a need to reduce the number of road accidents.

However, it is questionable whether suspension of licenses of blacklisted motorists is the correct, fair and practical solution.

Let’s first ask the first question- how many percent of the 1.7 million blacklisted drivers will settle their summonses for fear that their driving licenses will be suspended?

Going by past efforts of offering discounted rates to get drivers to pay up, I dare to say that not more than 50 % will do so even if the penalty to be meted out is the suspension of  driving licenses .

Why?

While there could be some who are recalcitrant who will not pay up, I believe that there are other factors.

I am of the view that many offenders have chosen not to pay their summonses simply because they are unable to afford as many are recipients of a few summonses which can total more than RM 1000.

As a motorbike or a car is the basic tool many need for daily work, the Police’s action of suspending their licenses will only force many to become unlicensed motorcyclists, lorry and car drivers on the road.

A new problem is thus created when there are many drivers who are without licenses and insurance cover on the road.

It is easy and simple to pin point fault at drivers for the high number of summonses issued and unsettled, but the police should first find out the actual reasons and causes for this phenomenon.

I believe that a reason for such high number of summonses being issued is due to the fact that there are many unpractical and unrealistic speed limits on our roads, thus resulting in many motorists being caught whenever there is a police exercise.

I therefore call on the Police to find out the real reasons for the phenomenon of high number of summonses issued and unsettled, instead of suspending the driving licenses which will create a big number of unlicensed drivers on the road.

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