Editorial: Traffic police causing grief to many and with reason, but…

Bar patrons who own cars have been rattled, especially following a police dragnet over the weekend that netted over 100 revelers who were over the legal alcohol limit.

Police have been on a very aggressive road safety awareness drive and are in the middle of a 52-week countrywide campaign dubbed “Gerayo Amahoro” (arrive safely). Number plate identifying camera’s dot our highways that give an immediate alert to a road user who over-speeds complete with the amount of fines to be paid.

Drivers have learnt to respect the zebra crossing and many have paid the ultimate price for not waiting for the pedestrian’s to get off the crossing stripes.

With Driving Under the Influence (DUI) having a price tag of Rwf 150,000, social media has been busy estimating how much the police reaped in fines in one weekend. But the purpose is not collecting traffic fines, it is saving people from their follies.

With all the cameras on the roadside, there is more than enough evidence to prove that an offence occurred, but some still occupy a grey area, so the police need to go an extra mile.

As the way things stand, police are treading a very thin legal line. A drink-driving charge can easily be challenged in court as it is accompanied by no evidence, especially after a person has sobered up.

Since the police has decided to go high-tech it can easily find how to accompany drink-driving charges with medical evidence. A blood test after every successful alco-test will save the police grief from a determined and vindictive culprit once in front of the magistrate.

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