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Friday, July 19, 2024

Parliament Rejects Proposed Amendments to Transport Regulations

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Truck drivers using foreign-issued Professional Driving Permit (PDP) and their employers may rest easy after the parliament rejected proposed amendments to the Transport Regulations.

Earlier this year, the Department of Transport (DoT) published proposed amendments to the Transport Regulations in the government gazette.

The proposed amendments would have effectively prohibited a foreign driver, who does not have a valid South African PDP, from driving a truck registered in South Africa

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National Employers’ Association of SA (NEASA), opposed the draft amendments saying they were solely meant to reduce the number of foreign drivers of trucks in the South African transport industry.

NEASA argued that the draft amendments would cause several legal problems in the road freight industry.

“This meant that if these amendments came into effect, foreign drivers currently legally employed in South Africa, with PDPs issued in their home country, would immediately become unemployable,” said Luthando Nondaba, a policy adviser at NEASA.

“This posed numerous industry-wide ramifications which threatened the constitutional right to fair labour practices, which right also extends to foreigners, and ultimately, would have caused immeasurable harm to employers, the economy, collective bargaining and international relations,” added Nondaba.

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Read also: Intense Runaway Truck Wheels Video Goes Viral

NEASA told its members that following its submissions, the select committee sent the draft back to the transport department for further consideration.

“We are informed by the inputs which have been made…there is nothing barring foreign nationals from driving trucks in our country and we cannot discriminate against foreigners. We subscribe to the values enshrined in our Constitution,” said chairperson of the committee, Kenny Mmoiemang.

The department is expected to rectify the provision endorsing this amendment.

Nondaba believes that this underscores the fact that employers and industry role-players, when united, have the power to influence policies and legislation, arbitrarily enforced by the government and its departments.

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