Hundreds, and potentially thousands, of traffic fines issued in Johannesburg and Pretoria under the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences (Aarto) Act may be scrapped, following a North Gauteng High Court ruling, reports News24.
According to the ruling, which has been described as landmark, more than 400 fines dating back to 2008 would be cancelled where authorities did not comply with the Aarto Act’s conditions.
The ruling could open the door for more motorists to have their fines scrapped, reported News24’s Kaveel Singh. The Justice Project of South Africa has commented on the judgement handed down by High Court in Pretoria on Friday (Feb. 24).
The High Court in Pretoria put straight some of the flagrant abuses of power which have been practiced by the Road Traffic Infringement Agency (RTIA) for a long time now, when Judge Bill Prinsloo ruled in favour of traffic fines management company Fines 4 U (Pty) Ltd and Audi Centre Johannesburg in a tedious and expensive PAJA Review Application brought against the former Deputy Registrar of the RTIA and eight other parties.
Justice Project SA’s national chairman Howard Dembovsky, said: “The net effect of this landmark judgment is that all of the 570 infringement notices upon which Cornelia van Niekerk, in her capacity as the proxy for Audi Centre Johannesburg made representation on in 2013 have now been made successful by the setting aside of the clearly irrational and inconsistent decision of making 208 representations unsuccessful, and the Deputy Registrar instructing that the remaining 207 which had not yet been “adjudicated” be made unsuccessful, while 155 of them were successful.”
What you should do
Dembovsky added: “Any other person who feels that they have been wronged by the Agency and/or the issuing authorities which are compelled to operate within the framework of the AARTO Act will therefore not see their traffic fines being automatically scrapped as a result of this judgment since it was granted exclusively to Fines 4 U and Audi Centre Johannesburg.
“What it does mean however is that all similarly affected persons and entities are fully entitled to cite this reportable decided case in making representations to the RTIA.
16 days to respond
JPSA has also held that applications for the revocation of enforcement orders which the Registrar issues in the first place and then gets to decide whether he should revoke them or not similarly does not put him and/or the RTIA in the position of being an “independent adjudicator”.
JPSA’s submission and presentation in September 2016 to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Transport, which is considering amendments to the AARTO Act, fell on deaf ears and has seen that Committee come up with further proposed amendments to the AARTO Act which seek to trample upon the constitutional rights of motorists.
The Committee made JPSA and 10 other interested persons/entities aware of this by email and published its proposed amendments on the Parliament of the RSA website on February 22, 2017, giving interested parties just 16 days to comment.
Source : http://www.wheels24.co.za/News/jpsa-heres-what-the-high-court-landmark-ruling-means-for-other-motorists-20170228