MPs criticize Bahrain’s hefty new traffic fines

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“People are selling their furniture to pay for their traffic fines” claimed MP Jamal Dawood in parliament yesterday, adding; “what we receive from the government is the customary phrase: the government cares about citizens’ interests. But, when citizens face serious issues and approach ministries or official authority, or the General Directorate for Traffic, they are told to approach the representatives. This is an insult to MPs, which is unacceptable. More cooperation should come from authorities’ side”..

Other MPs also joined the issue, demanding the installation of timers at traffic signals which they claimed would reduce traffic accidents, fines, and save lives.

The government recently rejected timers at traffic lights, saying that they are “impractical”. Adel Al Assoomy’s reply to this was as follows: “The government says the proposal is impractical and won’t benefit the public. Implement it first and see if it’s efficient or not. People are demanding to install these timers, as they believe it would reduce risks near junctions. Implement this project on a trial basis on one of the Kingdom’s main roads and prove that it’s impractical. We need to take such actions to save lives. This won’t cost the government much.”

The council’s Human Rights Committee Head Mohammed Al Maarifi commented; “The majority of offences occur near junctions and crossroads. They’re not all intentional. But drivers drive faster to catch the signal before it turns red, resulting in mishaps. This won’t happen unless adequate systems to alert drivers are installed at each intersection,”

The Works, Municipalities Affairs and Urban Planning Ministry said in its reply that the countdown timer system isn’t efficient and had been responsible for numerous fatal accidents in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait where in many cases the systems had been removed.

MPs agreed to hold an open debate at their next meeting to discuss the Traffic Law and fines being imposed on people. (Source credit – DT News)



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