Bid to expedite Road Accident Fund bill

Road Accident Fund Source: Google Images

Parliament’s portfolio committee on transport has indicated it wants the Road Accident Benefit Scheme Bill passed urgently and before South Africans head to the polls.

Chairperson of the committee Dikeledi Magadzi on Friday said the committee hoped Parliament would put the bill back on the agenda to be passed after an earlier attempt to have it approved failed.

During proceedings last year Parliament could not pass the bill because there was no quorum.

The bill proposes that funds paid out to road accident victims be capped.

Initially, proposed legislation had suggested that funds be capped at R100 000 for the victims, but that responsibility had now shifted to the board and administrators of the benefit scheme.

The Road Accident Fund claimed there were loopholes in the system in terms of some of the huge amounts already paid out.

The fund paid R500 million to a Swiss businessman in 2008 after he was involved in an accident in Cape Town. The settlement was described as a record in the country and possibly in the world.

Magadzi said the adoption of the bill by Parliament was necessary.

She said they would now wait for Parliament on what action to take next after the House failed to adopt it last year.

“If it’s put in the parliamentary agenda, we have already debated it, we will pass it and it will have to go to the National Council of Provinces,” she said.

The Department of Transport and the Road Traffic Management Corporation meanwhile has raised concern about the increase in road fatalities every year.