The working group of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport plans to submit a road traffic bill after holding 19 debates on the amendment and revising many articles found in the existing law.
The latest meeting was held for two days on August 3-4 under the chairmanship of Public Works Minister Sun Chanthol.
Attended by senior officials from several relevant institutions, including State Secretary of the Ministry of Justice Kim Santepheap, State Secretary of the Ministry of Interior Ouk Kim Lek and Deputy Chief of National Police Him Yan, among others.
According to the Ministry of Public Works, all meetings were held to collect inputs and comments to be taken into account when drafting an amendment to the Road Traffic Act before it is submitted to the Minister of Public Works. ‘Interior Sar Kheng, who is also chairman of the National Road Safety Committee.
The Ministry of Transport said that as a result of the 19 meetings, 48 of the law’s 92 articles were amended. They agreed to compile the content and change the wording to be clearly understandable, then planned to get Sar Kheng’s bill approved afterwards.
Speaking at the meeting, Chanthol said the recent tougher traffic enforcement and increased fines for violations were not meant to be profitable and the government only wants to see drivers and pedestrians safe and secure from accidents, injury and death.
“Traffic accidents leave disabled people, widowed women, orphaned children and all vulnerable to poverty,” he said.
Chanthol also said his ministry, in cooperation with the Home Office, has developed a program to individually track traffic violations and traffic fines with a point reduction system that could potentially cost offenders their driver’s license.
The Ministry of Transport is preparing an interministerial prakas on the modalities of this rating system and its implementation.
Transport ministry spokesperson Heang Sotheayuth told the Post that the existing law was drafted in 2007 and has undergone numerous amendments since then, so a new law was needed to reflect new developments in the society.
“Now we are making another round of amendments, but there are too many amendments to the articles of the law. So the best thing to do is to draft a new law and submit it for approval and seek its promulgation from His Majesty the King,” he said.
But he said it depended on Sar Kheng’s final approval on whether they would have an all-new road traffic law or just make changes.
Kim Panha, director of the Asia Injury Prevention Foundation Cambodia (AIP Foundation), supports the amendment of the traffic code. But for now, he suggested that the implementation of existing laws should be stricter, more consistent and transparent to ensure that the law protects citizens from traffic accidents.
“If possible, I think the government should consult with partner organizations working in the area of trafficking to provide input,” he said.
Panha said that the AIP Foundation has many points to provide, such as those related to tuk-tuks, which a large number of people use daily, and setting the maximum speed limit at 30 km per hour for all types of vehicles around schools.
He also urged the ministry to require motorcyclists to receive driver training as traffic accidents among them remain high.