Uncle Harvest: Re-emergence of number plateless vehicle

In the past week in Lilongwe city, there has been a re-emergence of government vehicles being driven on the road without number plates.

This, to say the least, is against the laws of Malawi.

Government vehicles are supposed to be exemplary to other road users in so far as the rule of law is concerned. The law that governs the use of roads in this country does not exempt anyone from using number plates nor does it empower anyone to issue a permit to that effect.

It is further observed that such vehicles are occupied by someone seated at the back seat, in a suit, and with an executive look.

In the past, such executive occupants of vehicles that are number plateless have been political leaders who claimed to do it for security reasons.

The questions that citizens ask are: What crime have you committed against the people that you now want to conceal yourself from them? Whose leader are you? The people you are scared of?" By the way, your fellow leaders are eating, drinking, and dancing with the people they lead. Are you a leader? Why are you alone? Where are the people you are supposed to lead? How have you become scared of them?

If this country has to ascribe to the rule of law, which is one of the cardinal points of the Tonse government, it has to start with those in government leadership and management.

In any case, government vehicles are public goods and have to be clearly identified on public roads.

This tendency by political leaders to exempt themselves from adhering to certain aspects of the law is, to say the least is distasteful.

The Malawi Police Service and the Road Traffic Department must not tolerate such behaviour, no matter who does it.

Otherwise, you lose moral ground to enforce the law on others.

Number plateless vehicles plying the roads shade a negative light especially on Traffic Police when you consider the number of police traffic checks in Lilongwe city.

This article first appeared here