Cabinet to decide soon on traffic laws enforcer

By Lanuola Tusani Tupufia - Ah Tong 20 March 2019, 12:00AM

Cabinet will soon make a decision on whether the Land Transport Authority (LTA) or the Ministry of Police will enforce traffic regulations. 

This was made clear by Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sa'ilele Malielegaoi, who is also the Minister of Police, in Parliament on Tuesday. 

Speaking during debate on the Road Traffic Amendment Bill 2019, several Members of Parliament raised concerns on the division of power over road and traffic offences between the two ministries. 

But the Prime Minister assured the MPs, that the issue regarding the overlapping of functions between the LTA and the Police, is with the Cabinet for its deliberations. 

“The matter between what should be dealt with by LTA and what should be done by Police is before cabinet. What’s happening now it’s like a horse with two heads. One head is going the other side and the other head is going the opposite side. 

“We are looking at policies that are before Cabinet in this matter and it will take some time to discuss, but I feel that it is something that needs a decision now," the PM said. 

Earlier the Associate Minister of Communication Information and Technology, Lealailepule Rimoni Aiafi, questioned which Ministry had the powers to deal with traffic regulations as it appeared both the LTA and the Police could enforce legislation. 

“If an incident occurred and say a car was impounded by LTA and similarly Police impound the vehicle which authority does one go to? Can this be clarified," he said. 

Vaisigano no2 MP, Tapulesatele Mauteni Tamasone Metuli II Esera, raised similar sentiments and said most days he saw the LTA on the road and not the Police. 

He asked that these provisions of the law should be looked into and whether both the Police and LTA officers should be given equal powers under the legislation. 

The division between the Police and the LTA over the enforcement of traffic regulations has been a long standing issue over the past years. 

By Lanuola Tusani Tupufia - Ah Tong 20 March 2019, 12:00AM

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