Johannesburg motorists, according to the City of Johannesburg, have been equipped with the powers to curb bad driving by reporting it to the newly-formed Buya Mthetho WhatsApp hotline.
As reported by Cape Talk, the pilot project will grant pedestrians, motorists and passengers with the ability to report drivers who pose a serious threat on the roads.
What is operation Buya Mthetho about?
According to the City of Johannesburg’s MMC for public safety, Michael Sun, this is the provincial government’s way of giving the power back to the people.
“A lot of road users believe that it’s ok to drive in a reckless manner and this really a dangerous situation and these little time bombs of accidents are bound to happen,” Sun said.
How does it work?
According to the MMC, passengers, motorists and pedestrians can easily whip out their phones to document all acts of reckless driving that they witness.
Thereafter, they would have to send the clear image or video to the WhatsApp hotline “with the description of the incident including place, date and time.”
Once this has been sent, Sun stated, the City’s 24-hour service centre would process the complaint and, if necessary, escalate it to the level of prosecution.
The catch 22
However, there is a catch. Those who have submitted evidence of the reckless act would have to testify against the charged driver in a court of law.
This is why, according to Sun, it is essential that the person who submitted the image or video is the originator of the content.
Sun guaranteed the anonymity of the whistleblower, at least until the process gets to court.
“Before we get to a court process, the identity of the complainant will be kept 100% anonymous. There is no reason for us to divulge the identity of the complainant,” he said.
What is the WhatsApp hotline?
Those who have witnessed bad driving can send all images and videos to 081 410 6338, operation Buya Mthetho’s WhatsApp hotline.