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Steps by the Government to pass legislation to indemnify the State for imposing and collecting excessive traffic fines since 2006 were a flawed approach to resolve the issue and will not stand up to legal scrutiny, says attorney-at-law Gavin Goffe.

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Stung by a lawsuit that if successful, could see the authorities paying out billions of dollars, the Government has called a sitting of the Lower House today to debate a bill that is seeking to validate state actors who carried out duties that apparently did not have the backing of the law.

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Further, an injunction granted by a Supreme Court judge on Wednesday blocking the police from issuing traffic tickets in excess of fines up to 2006 rates could put a massive dent in the Government’s projected collection of $225 million in road traffic fines this fiscal year.

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In an unusual departure from both tradition and the Standing Orders, the House of Representatives will today sit to debate The Road Traffic (Amendment, Validation and Indemnity) Act, 2021.

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The parliamentary agenda was tweaked Thursday afternoon to accommodate today’s debate on the bill, which will be taken through all its stages.


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