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Durban - Two KwaZulu-Natal traffic licensing officials were arrested on fraud and corruption charges at the Phoenix testing station on Thursday for passing a defective truck which had failed the test in the morning.
A vehicle examiner and data capture clerk were arrested by the Road Traffic Management Corporation’s national traffic anti-corruption unit. The unit was launched last year and its mandate is to address fraud and corruption among the traffic authorities.
The corporation’s acting chief executive, Gilberto Martins, said the truck, which apparently belonged to ABI (Coca-Cola), was allegedly passed by the examiner “when he was not even at work”, and had already been failed twice.
“Corrupt activities that expose our people on the roads to danger will not be tolerated; the RTMC, under our new intelligent enforcement tactics, will erode all elements that pose a threat to road safety,” said Martins.
In July, two Melmoth traffic officials were arrested on fraud and corruption charges.
One issued a heavy motor vehicle licence to his colleague without doing the test.
Martins said “such incidents” did not help “fight the carnage on our roads”.
“Vehicle fitness, which includes defective tyres, steering and braking mechanisms, with overloading and excessive speeding, remains the major contributory factor (to road deaths),” he said.
Kwanele Ncalane, spokesman for the provincial Transport Department, said the arrests came at a time when the department was intensifying its efforts to clamp down on corruption at testing centres.
The two officials will appear in the Phoenix Regional Court on a date still to be announced.