National, News

Minister demands stripping police of licensing powers



By Bida Elly David

South Sudan’s minister of transport seeks to strip production of motor vehicle licenses from the traffic police, saying it’s not under jurisdiction of the force.

Madut Biar urged the parliament for legislation on the matter, saying vehicle licenses and logbooks falls under the Ministry of Transport, not the traffic police.

However, the traffic police, since 2005, have been issuing vehicle licenses and logbooks.

Addressing the legislators on Tuesday, Minister Biar termed act as “a daylight robbery of duties” by the directorate of traffic police.

He said that the directorate’s main function is to enforce rules that govern the movement of cars and drivers across the nation but not to issue licenses and logbooks.

“The police are the ones licensing the cars including issuance of logbooks, which is not the case. The Ministry of Transport is only left with government cars, which are GoSS and others that belong to diplomats,” Bair said.

The Minister argues that the same institution enforcing laws should not also be regulating vehicles, as it presents a conflict of interest.

“The Ministry of Transport is the regulator, licensing all the cars, checking all documents, releasing cars to the roads, and this is where traffic police will start their work on conformity,” he said.

“We have been discussing this so that they actually surrender those works to the ministry of transport, but it requires laws because they have been working since 2005,” Biar told the lawmakers.

Mr. Biar further stated that the East African Community has presented numerous complaints about why police regulate vehicles and enforce laws.

“The East African Community (EAC) always complains about why the police in South Sudan are regulators regulator at the same time become law enforcement agencies.  It really needs the help of the national parliament,” he pleaded.

To that effect, the parliament resolved to summon the Interior Minister to clarify the roles and duties of the traffic police.

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