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Electronic Spot Fine performance evaluated

Electronic Spot Fine performance evaluated

The electronic Spot Fine (eSpot Fine) performance has been reviewed, during a meeting convened between Road Fund and Lesotho Mounted Police Service (LMPS), at the ‘Manthabiseng Convention Centre on June 28, 2023.

The review meeting was aimed at assessing progress on eSpot Fine since the LMPS moved from manual Spot Fine to the electronic based one that uses devices and computers for its administration under the sponsorship of Road Fund.

Delivering his official opening remarks, the Road Fund CEO Mr. Nkekeletse Makara said the review meeting was long overdue as the electronic Spot Fine has been fully operational since September 2019.

He said transitioning from manual to electronic based work throughout the country should have come with challenges, which he encouraged participants to spell out so that they can dully be addressed in order to improve on the eSpot Fine system.

He clarified that Road Fund is entrusted to collect road user charges through various streams, saying that road traffic offences charged by LMPS through issuance of Spot Fines to road users need to be well executed in order not only to collect the funds but also to save lives and restore order and compliance to Traffic Laws in the country.

Speaking on behalf of the Commissioner of Police, the Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police Mr. Tšeliso Moerane expressed his appreciation to the Road Fund for sponsoring this initiative, adding that since introduction of the electronic Spot Fine, a number of Traffic Police Officers have shown enthusiasm to their work; also saying that even though they are not yet perfect, their skills are definitely improving for the better.

Presenting on the actual performance of the Spot Fine the Road Fund Head of Finance Mrs. Mphaphathi Ramanyalane showed that in 2023 the sum of issued Spot Fine totalled 34 000, with only 22 906 of them paid while 11 104 remain overdue.

In the discussions during the meeting, the Senior Police Officers in attendance indicated that even through the eSpot Fine has improved their work in several ways, there are a number of challenges they face as they operationalise it.

They said such include overdue fines consisting mostly of taxi drivers who do not tell vehicle owners that they have been issued with spot fines, or people who sell their vehicles and fail to disclose to buyers that they have pending fines.

Sometimes the online payment points do not function thereby hindering road users to pay fines within the stipulated seven days’ time frame, they added.

Another challenge they talked about related to access to network in the rural areas, as the devices are internet based, and they also called for increase on the number of devices themselves, as they have always been limited.

The meeting concluded by agreeing to note all the challenges and devise possible remedies, which would be tracked over time, and would be reviewed in the next meeting. The meeting was attended by Road Fund and LMPS Management from all regions of the country.

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