New traffic offence notifications: Call on the Attorney General and
Inspector General of Police to clear the public confusion
Press Conference Statement
by Kerk Kim Hock
(Kota Melaka, Wednesday): Yesterday, I received a traffic offence notification by registered post for a speeding offence committed along the North South Highway on 19.6.2003.
I was surprised to note the new format of the notice, in particular the section about the requirement to submit the driver’s particulars to the Police.
My immediate conclusion is that such a change in format is due to the fact that I have challenged the legality of the summons issued under section 115 of the 1987 Road Transport Act in the Parliament on 19.6.2002.
I had challenged the legality of the summons on the ground that in the old format, it was clearly stated that vehicle registered owners who did not commit the offence as stated in the notice are required to furnish the drivers’ particulars within 7 days to the Police. I contended that this automatically means that vehicle owners who are drivers themselves need not have to submit any particulars so long as they admit they have committed the offence.
The deputy Home Minister Datuk Chor Chee Heong replied that as there was confusion with the words “tuanpunya " and " pemandu “ in the notice, the views of the Attorney General would be sought.
Nevertheless, in subsequent replies to my parliamentary questions, the government confirmed that summonses issued under section 115 (1) (a) have been canceled and treated as No further Action.
On April 7 this year, the Home Minister in a parliamentary reply to me confirmed that a total of 38, 356 summonses issued under section 115 of the Road Transport Act and which carried a penalty of RM 300 per summon have been cancelled or treated as No Further Action.
In the new notice, the section on the requirement to furnish drivers’ particulars read as follows:
“ Under paragraph 115 (1) (a) of the Road Transport Act 1987, you as the registered owner of the motor vehicle bearing the registration number……………… are hereby requested within SEVEN (7) DAYS from the date of this notice (marked *) to give information on the Space Below as to the identity, address and particulars of the driving license of the person who was driving the said motor vehicle on the date, time and place mentioned above and return the same to the address (marked **) below:”
Another relevant paragraph states:
“ Failure on your part to give the above information as required within SEVEN (7) DAYS from the date of this notice (marked *) constitutes an offence under paragraph 115 (1) (a) of the Road Transport Act 1987 and punishable under subsection 119 (2) of the same Act.”
Any recipient of the new notice will take it that they will have to submit the drivers’ particulars to the Police, regardless of whether they have agreed to accept the compound offer and are prepared to settle the compound amount before the deadline given.
As millions of traffic offence notices are sent out every year and since the new notice has caused anxiety and confusion among the public, I call on the Attorney General and the Inspector General of Police to make the necessary clarifications, especially on the following questions:
* Kerk Kim Hock, DAP Secretary General & MP for Kota Melaka