The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) has arrested 37 drivers for negligent driving after the offences were captured by a video surveillance system, as the use of the Electronic Traffic Management System gathers momentum.
Motorists have since been urged to heed all traffic rules and regulations. In a statement yesterday, national police spokesman Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi confirmed the arrests.
“The Zimbabwe Republic Police has noted with concern a sudden increase in the number of motorists who are failing to adhere to road rules and regulations, especially driving against one way and going through red robots.
“During the ongoing operation “Adhere to Traffic Rules and Regulations”, police arrested 37 rogue drivers in Harare for reckless driving and driving without due care and attention after they were caught on camera,” he said. Police, he said, managed to make a follow up based on the video evidence, leading to the arrest of the culprits.
“The accused persons were then taken to court where they were convicted and given sentences ranging from 30 days to 18 months imprisonment, or made to pay fines ranging from $100 to $300, or to perform a minimum of 110 hours community service,” Chief Supt Nyathi said.
He warned that all drivers caught on the wrong side of the law will face the full wrath of the law. According to Chief Supt Nyathi, public transport drivers should also desist from actions that endanger the lives of their passengers and other road users.
“As the Zimbabwe Republic Police, we urge motorists to abide by traffic rules and regulations. Drivers of public transport should desist from actions that endanger lives of their passengers as well as other road users. All those caught driving against one way or engaging in any dangerous driving act will be taken to court to face the full wrath of the law,” he said.
The new video surveillance system is part of the police force’s Electronic Traffic Management System. In October last year, the Officer Commanding National Traffic Senior Assistant Commissioner Isaac Tayengwa said they had already embraced the Electronic Traffic Management System to improve road safety enforcements and speedily process tickets and prosecution of offenders.
“The system is being introduced in phases and started with the use of ticketing devices in Harare. Instead of issuing handwritten tickets, we are using the electronic ticketing system, which has cash and “swipe” payment platforms. A mobile money platform will soon be included,” he said then.
Snr Asst Comm Tayengwa said there were many advantages associated with the electronic management system, which include minimising corruption and enhancing supervision.
In essence, the system makes it possible for the supervisor to monitor the activities of deployed personnel from his office. Police say the electronic ticketing devices can produce tickets quicker than doing it manually, while a speed camera has multiple functions such as speed, red lights, stop lines and barrier-line infringements detection.
According to Snr Asst Comm Tayengwa, empirical evidence has shown that advanced traffic enforcement systems have the potential to reduce road fatalities.