I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live.

~George Bernard Shaw

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Plan for Engagement - Fighting Traffic Corruption

Corruption can broadly be defined as the act of giving or offering, receiving or accepting of an advantage or gratification as an inducement or reward in connection with the performance of a duty. It therefore includes abuse of authority of office for personal gain. In this case, traffic corruption occurs in two ways: Firstly, when a traffic officer demands for a bribe from a motorist in relation to an offence committed or alleged to have been committed. The bribe is meant to allow the motorists escape the fine or any such sanctions associated with the offence. Secondly, it may occur when a motorist having committed or alleged to have committed a traffic offence offers a bribe to a traffic officer as an inducement or reward for the officer to allow the motorists escape the fine or sanctions attached to the offence.
The environment in which this act of corruption occurs in Zambia, especially in the city of Lusaka portrays a lack of integrity system for the motorists and traffic officers, a perpetuation of systems that promote disorder and anarchy on the roads and encourages disregard of the law with impunity.
How then can we try to involve the public transport operators and drivers to be part of the fight against traffic corruption. While this may be challenging because of the identified satisfied end for the parties involves, we will take an assumption that public transport operators do not like paying bribes to traffic officers.
As an initial step in the overall picture of the problem, the project will endeavour to fulfil the following proposed measures. 
i) Engage public transport operators and bus drivers through their Associations into seeing the benefits of tackling this vice.
ii) Bring on bold RTSA and Police Service Integrity Committees as partners.
iii) Establish the ‘Forum Against Traffic Corruption’ (FACT) as a platform for discussing ways of tackling the vice.
iv) Lobby funds from among stakeholders for production of car posters and stickers denouncing corruption – These will then be placed on the buses or taxis and distributed to other motorists. (e.g. Be Road Smart - Stop Traffic Corruption)
v) Produce information leaflets on the traffic laws and regulations and how to report traffic corruption
vi) Lobby and engage bus drivers through their association and employers into adherence of traffic laws and regulations and to resist and report cases of traffic corruption.
This is the beginning.


  1. Traffic Corruption; if only people could avoid as much as possible to pay the traffic police,there would have been no corruption. In the first place, they don't care about checking their car if it is in road worthy condition, knowing that if in case they are caught by traffic police..."its money talks" ponda apa naine nipondepo..not so nice, they are playing with their lives coz money is not worth your life...Lets try to fight that and stop pretending that you are signing papers for charges!!!

    Gladys Storm

  2. Hi Timothy,

    your ideas are great. I wish your success for alleviating traffic corruption.


  3. It is a pity that people nowadays want an integrity system to remind them of their basic responsibilities in society. Surely our rich cultures teach some of these values like honesty, kindness, fairness, hardwork, integrity and respect for other people. We don't need to learn them from a classroom or pass an exam to qualify to posses them. Let alone wait for someone to design an integrity system. Where are we headed???

    The idea of using public transporters to fight corruption seems a very courageous undertaking to me. It is like asking a thief to watch over your house when you go away on holiday. They are the biggest culprits in this. I can assure you anything that will convert them is bound to transform this world into a corruption free society!!! Seriously I think the bulk of the corruption occurs between the police and the public transporters, so accurately nicknamed "Tom and Jerry" in my country. Its a good point to start from indeed.