Minister to explain R40K fines
BLUE LIGHT BRIGADE AT IT AGAIN: Energy minister Dipuo Peters is in hot water after racking up nearly R40 000 in fines being driven to and from official business trips by SA’s infamous blue light brigade.
Cape Town - The DA wants energy minister Dipuo Peters to explain to Parliament how she managed to rack up nearly R40 000 in traffic fines around South Africa.
The Democratic Alliance's Japie van der Linde enquired in a media release how the minister managed to incur the staggering amount of traffic fines.
Van der Linde asked: "Whether any traffic fines were incurred with regard to any of her official vehicles from 2009-2012. If so, what amount in fines was incurred in respect of each specified vehicle in each specified financial year and are the relevant details in each case?"
In reply, the energy minister’s office released a document detailing the dates and fines incurred stating: "The minister is driven to and from official engagements by the South African Police Services’ VIP Protection Unit and the following traffic fines were incurred by the unit’s members in the execution on duty."
Peters revealed in a written reply to a parliamentary question from Greyling that fines totaling R39 400 were imposed between April 2010 and March 2012 and included four tickets amounting to R4500 each.
*See the breakdown of fines!
DA spokesperson on energy, Lance Greyling, said that the minister should set an example to others: "It beggars belief that any individual – let alone a minister of state – can rack up such huge fines in such a short space of time. I will therefore be asking the minister to come to Parliament to explain how she managed to incur R40 000 worth of traffic fines.
“Cabinet ministers must set an example for the public by upholding the law but speeding ministers in blue-light convoys simply confirm the perception that members of this government consider themselves above the law."
Peter's fines outdid the R30 400 incurred by drivers for agriculture, forestry and fisheries minister Tina Joemat-Petterson.
Greyling said: "The minister must take responsibility for the speed at which her convoy travels and their adherence to traffic rules. Being late for a meeting does not give her an excuse to switch on the blue lights, break the speed limit, and endanger the lives of law-abiding motorists through traffic violations.
"We are also interested to know whether the minister actively encouraged the traffic violations."
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*The table does not state what the fines were for