I am encouraged by the response of a number of Individuals on Social Media to my posting of a Minibus Driver committing a traffic offence in full view of the Public. Too often we are given the same answer by Citizens when calls to action are put forward – “Oh there are no laws in Guyana”. To this I am in total disagreement. The Laws are there. The solution is to initiate action in order for those Laws to be effective. Every Administration in this Country has taken the easy route which is simply to lay blame at the previous Gatekeepers’ doorstep. Their excuse for poor performance at the expense of the Guyanese Taxpayer. Guyana is on the verge of an oil based economy.
There will be Dignitaries, Officials and Visitors from far and wide. Are the Administrators proud of what these Visitors will see? What about the plight of Commuters, Pedestrians and Students who are forced to lose valuable time on a daily basis due to the constant gridlock. And sadly there’s the carnage. Two thousand road fatalities in the past fifteen years, one hundred fourteen in the current year. Unthinkable for a region with a population of approximately eight hundred thousand people and a far from encouraging economy. Any visitor cannot help but observe the gross actions of motorists as they abuse and bully each other and torment other road users with impunity.
Very effective solutions exist. These will involve deep commitment from The Revenue Authority, the Auto Insurers, the Justice System and the Guyana Police. The time to get these Stakeholders to the table is now.
– The demerit points system has been a proven deterrent in other Jurisdictions. Guyana with its low population can certainly implement a six point demerit system. An accumulation of six demerit points should be cause for suspension of ones’ driving privilege for a period of two years.
– Drivers should be forced to reapply for their Licence after two years, but only after attending counselling classes and undergoing remedial training at their own expense. These costs must be high enough to reflect the pain and suffering errant drivers impose upon society.
– Implement a system of Facility Insurance for drivers who are deemed high risk with extremely high or unaffordable rates, again reflective of the pain and suffering they impose on society.
– Charge Drivers for blood alcohol content above 0.00%. Blood alcohol content of 0.08 and above must result in immediate and on-site termination of driving privilege. Impaired operation of a motor vehicle resulting in death must be considered a Capital offence and engage a higher court.
– One hundred percent Burden or Onus Of Proof should be placed on errant drivers, not the victims.
– Insurance rates should be increased drastically based on accumulation of demerit points. Again, hold Drivers financially accountable for abuse of their driving privilege.
The first and foremost objective here would be the obvious, reducing or eliminating the horrendous cycle of road fatalities. The abhorrent sub-culture which has emerged among Motorists should recede or decline. The City of Georgetown and its environs will become more welcoming to Visitors.
The Revenue Authority, Insurers and other Parties can view these implementations as revenue streams. The idea should not be about winners and losers. Everyone will emerge a winner.
Guyana is soon to become a Global player. A right-thinking administration needs to see the writing now.
Mo Zulfi Zaman
Aug 10, 2020By Sean Devers Thirteen years older than his 22-year-old opponent, undefeated Guyanese born Lennox ‘2 Sharp’ Allen stepped into the ring for the biggest fight of his 16 years as a professional...
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