DA: 43% of Gauteng drunk driving cases pending due to forensic lab backlogs
JOHANNESBURG - The Democratic Alliance in Gauteng on Sunday called for more resources to be provided to forensic laboratories in the province.
"For the 2016/17 and 2017/18 financial years 53,414 drunk driving arrests were made across Gauteng; yet 22,915 (43%) cases have not been able to be concluded due to outstanding blood tests," DA Gauteng MPL Michele Clarke said.
While in almost every arrest a blood test was conducted on the "guilty driver", only 23,892 blood test results had been returned. Gauteng had a high road mortality rate and every year the minister of transport painted a horrific picture of how this number continued to grow, she said.
Expensive and elaborate road safety programmes were rolled out annually to no avail as those who broke the law knew that they would not face punitive action.
The slow pace of returning the results of blood tests backlogs in the criminal justice system in many cases delayed justice. If justice was delayed lawlessness would continue to thrive.
"I will write to the MEC for community safety Sizakele Nkosi-Malobane to ascertain what steps she has taken to lobby her counterparts in national government to provide more resources to forensic laboratories in the province," Clarke said.