Road Traffic Act
- Commenced on 15 January 1998
- [This is the version of this document at 31 December 2014.]
- [Note: This version of the Act was revised and consolidated in the Fifth Revised Edition of the Laws of Malawi (L.R.O. 1/2018), by the Solicitor General and Secretary for Justice under the authority of the Revision of the Laws Act.]
Part 1 – Preliminary
1. Short titleThis Act may be cited as the Road Traffic Act.
2. InterpretationIn this Act, unless the context otherwise indicates—"ambulance" means a motor vehicle specially constructed or adapted for the purpose of conveying sick or injured persons to or from a place for medical treatment and which is registered as such;"animal" means any horse, cattle, ass, mule, sheep, pig, goat or dog;"articulated motor vehicle" means a combination of motor vehicles consisting of a truck-tractor and a semi-trailer;"authorized officer" means a road traffic examiner, motor vehicle examiner, weighbridge inspector or a traffic police officer and includes any other person whom the Minister may, from time to time, by regulation declare to be an authorized officer;"breakdown vehicle" means a motor vehicle designed or adapted solely for the purpose of recovering or salvaging motor vehicles and which is registered as such;"breath test" means a test for the purpose of indicating the concentration of alcohol in a person’s blood carried out on that person’s breath by means of a device and procedures authorized by the Minister;"bridge" includes a culvert and a causeway;"builder" means any person who, for the purposes of the business of selling motor vehicles, manufactures or assembles motor vehicles in whole or in part from used components;"bus" means a motor vehicle designed or adapted for the conveyance of ten or more persons including the driver;"certificate of fitness" in relation to a motor vehicle, means a certificate issued under section 71;"combination of motor vehicles" means two or more motor vehicles coupled together;"cross" or any like expressions, means to move on a public road in a direction which intersects the normal course of travel of traffic on such road;"Director" means the Director of Road Traffic appointed under section 3 or his duly authorized representative;"driver" means any person who drives or attempts to drive any vehicle or who rides or attempts to ride any pedal cycle or who guides any draught, pack or saddle animal or herd or flock of animals, and "drive" or any like word has a corresponding meaning;"driver’s licence" means a driver’s licence referred to in Part V;"driver’s licence testing centre" means a driver’s licence testing centre referred to in Part V;"enforcement agency" means the Malawi Police Service or any local authority which has a traffic warden in its employment or any other agency authorized by some written law to enforce traffic law;"examiner" means a road traffic examiner or a motor vehicle examiner as the case may be appointed under Part II;"fire-fighting vehicle" means a motor vehicle designed or adapted solely or principally for fighting fires and which is registered as such;"freeway" means a public road or a section of a public road which has been designated as a freeway by an appropriate road traffic sign;"goods" means any movable property;"gross combination mass", in relation to a motor vehicle which is used to draw any other motor vehicles, means the maximum mass of any combination of motor vehicles, including the drawing vehicle and load as specified by the manufacturer thereof or, in the absence of such specification, as determined by the Director;"gross vehicle mass" in relation to a motor vehicle, means the maximum mass of such vehicle and its load as specified by the manufacturer or, in the absence of such specification, as determined by the Director;"highway authority" has the meaning assigned thereto in the Public Roads Act;[Cap. 69:02]"importer" means any person who, for the purposes of his business of selling motor vehicles, imports new or used motor vehicles into Malawi;"instructor" means any person who for direct or indirect reward—(a)instructs any person in the driving of a motor vehicle;(b)teaches any other person the rules of the road or road traffic signs in order to obtain a learner’s or a driver’s licence;"intersection" means the area embraced within the prolongation of the lateral boundary lines of two or more public roads, open to vehicular traffic, that join one another at any angle, whether or not one such public road crosses the other;"intoxicating liquor" has the meaning assigned thereto in the Liquor Act;[Cap. 50:07]"learner’s licence" means a learner’s licence referred to in Part IV;"left" means left reckoned by reference to the direction or towards which the vehicle, animal or person is facing at the material time;"manufacturer" means a person who, for the purposes of his business of selling motor vehicles, manufactures or assembles new motor vehicles;"medical practitioner" means any person registered as such under the Medical Practitioners and Dentists Act;[Cap. 36:01]"motorcycle" means a motor vehicle which has two wheels and includes any such vehicle having a side-car attached;"motor quadrucycle" means a motor vehicle, other than a motor cycle or a tractor, which has four wheels and which is designed to be driven by the type of controls usually fitted to a motor cycle;"motor trader" means any person who is engaged in the business of buying, selling, exchanging or repairing motor vehicles required to be registered and licenced in terms of the Automotive Trades Registration and Fair Practices Act or of building permanent structures onto such vehicles and who complies with the prescribed conditions;[Cap. 50:05]"motor tricycle" means a motor vehicle, other than a motor cycle or a tractor, which has three wheels and which is designed to be driven by the type of controls usually fitted to a motor cycle;"motor vehicle" means any self-propelled vehicle and includes—(a)a trailer; and(b)vehicle having pedals and an engine or an electric motor as an integral part thereof or attached thereto and which is designed or adapted to be propelled by means of such pedals and engine or motor, but does not include—(i)any vehicle propelled by electrical power derived from storage batteries and which is pedestrian-controlled; or(ii)any vehicle with a mass of not more than two hundred and thirty kilograms and specially designed and constructed, and not merely adapted, for the use of any person suffering from some physical defect or disability and used solely by such person;"motor vehicle inspection station" means a motor vehicle inspection station registered under section 64;"operate on a public road" or any like expression in relation to a vehicle, means to use or drive a vehicle or to permit a vehicle to be used or driven on a public road, or to have or to permit a vehicle to be on a public road;"operator" means the person responsible for the use of a motor vehicle of any class contemplated in Part VII, and who has been registered as the operator of such vehicle;"owner" in relation to a vehicle, means—(a)the person who has the right to the use and enjoyment of vehicle in terms of a contractual agreement with the title holder of such vehicle;(b)any person referred to in paragraph (a), for any period during which such person has failed to return that vehicle to the title holder in accordance with the contractual agreement referred to in paragraph (a);(c)the person who is a title holder and has the use and enjoyment of the vehicle; or(d)a motor trader who is in possess of a vehicle for the purpose of sale, and who is registered as such under section 11; and "owned" or any like word has a corresponding meaning;"park" means to keep a vehicle, whether occupied or not, stationary for a period of time longer than is reasonably necessary for the actual loading or unloading of persons or goods, but does not include any such keeping of a vehicle by reason of a cause beyond the control of the person in charge of such vehicle;"pedal cycle" means any bicycle or tricycle designed for propulsion solely by means of human power;"pedestrian crossing" means—(a)that marked portion of a public road at an intersection included within the prolongation or connexion of the kerb line and adjacent boundary line of such road; or(b)any other portion of public road designated as a pedestrian crossing by appropriate road traffic signs;"prescribed territory" means any state or territory declared by the Minister by notice published in the Gazette to be a prescribed territory;"professional driver" means the driver of a motor vehicle in respect of which an operator is registered;"professional driving permit" means a professional driving permit referred to in Part V;"public road" has the meaning assigned thereto in the Public Roads Act;[Cap. 69:02]"rescue vehicle" means a motor vehicle designed or adapted solely for the purpose of rescuing persons and which is owned or controlled by a department of the government, local authority or a body of persons approved by the Director and is registered as such;"road service permit" means a road service permit referred to in Part VII;"road traffic examiner" means a road traffic examiner appointed under Part II;"road traffic sign" means a road traffic sign prescribed under section 89;"roadworthy" in relation to a vehicle, means a vehicle which complies with the relevant provisions of this Act and is otherwise in a fit condition to be operated on a public road;"semi-trailer" means a trailer having no front axle and so designed that at least fifteen per cent of its tare is superimposed on and borne by a vehicle drawing such trailer;"sidewalk" means that portion of a verge intended for the exclusive use of pedestrians;"tare" in relation to a motor vehicle, means the mass of such vehicle ready to travel on a road and includes the mass of—(a)any spare wheel and all other accessories and equipment supplied by the manufacturer as standard for the particular model of motor vehicle concerned;(b)anything which is a permanent part of the structure of such vehicle;(c)anything affixed to such vehicle so as to form a structural alteration of a permanent nature; and(d)the accumulators, if such vehicle is self-propelled by electrical power, but does not include the mass of—(i)fuel; and(ii)anything affixed to such vehicle which is not of the nature referred to in paragraph (b) or (c);"title holder" in relation to a vehicle, means—(a)the person who has to give permission for the alienation of that vehicle in terms of a contractual agreement with the owner of such vehicle, or(b)the person who has the right to alienate that vehicle,and who is registered as such under section 11;"tractor" means a motor vehicle designed or adapted mainly for drawing other vehicles and not to carry any load thereon, but does not include a truck-tractor;"traffic lane" means a longitudinal division of a public road of sufficient width to accommodate the passage of a single line of vehicles;"traffic signal" means a road traffic sign which, by means of automatic signals, alternately directs traffic to stop and permits it to proceed;"traffic warden" means a traffic warden referred to in section 182;"trailer" means a vehicle which is not self-propelled and which is designed or adapted to be drawn by a motor vehicle, but does not include a side-car attached to a motor cycle;"truck-tractor" means a motor vehicle designed or adapted—(a)for drawing other vehicles; and(b)not to carry any load other than that imposed by a semitrailer or by ballast,but does not include a tractor;"vehicle" means a device designed or adapted principally to travel on wheels or crawler tracks and includes such a device which is connected with a draw-bar to a breakdown vehicle and is used as part of the towing equipment of a breakdown vehicle to support any axle or all the axles of a motor vehicle which is being salvaged other than such a device which moves exclusively on rails;"verge" means that portion of a road, street or thoroughfare which is not the roadway.
Part II – Registering authority and officers
3. Appointment of Director of Road TrafficThere shall be appointed a Director of Road Traffic who shall, subject to the general or special directions of the Minister, exercise such powers and perform such duties as are conferred upon him by or in pursuance of this or any other Act.
4. Appointment of officers
5. Establishment of Committee for Road Traffic Law Enforcement
6. Determination and enforcement of national policy on road traffic law enforcement
7. Powers and duties of an examiner
8. Powers and duties of a traffic police officerA traffic police officer may, subject to the provisions of this Act and any other written law—
9. Failure to comply with instruction or direction of an authorized officer
10. Impersonating authorized officer or inducing any such officer not to perform his duty
Part III – Registration and licensing of motor vehicles
11. Registration and licensing of motor vehicles
12. Previous registration deemed to be registration under this ActNotwithstanding anything contained in section 11, any motor vehicle registered under the Act now repealed shall be deemed to be registered under this Act, and the registration mark assigned to such motor vehicle under the Act now repealed shall be deemed to have been assigned under this Act.
Part IV – Registration and licensing of manufacturers, builders and importers
13. Application for registration and registration of manufacturer, builder and importer
14. Suspension and cancellation of registration of manufacturer, builder or importerThe Director may, upon giving reasons in writing, suspend for a stated period or cancel the registration of a manufacturer, builder or importer.
15. Manufacturer, builder or importer to register motor vehiclesEvery manufacturer, builder or importer of motor vehicles shall register in the prescribed manner every motor vehicle manufactured, built or imported by him before he distributes or sells such vehicle.
16. Right of appeal to Minister
17. Appointment of inspector of manufacturers, builders and importers
Part V – Licensing of drivers, issuing professional driving permits and hours of driving
18. Driver of motor vehicle to be licensed
19. Licence to drive
20. Prescribing, classification and extent of learner's or driver’s licenceSubject to the provisions of this Part—
21. Disqualification from obtaining or holding learner’s or driver's licence
22. Failure to disclose disqualification in respect of licence authorizing driving of motor vehicle
23. Application for and issue of learner's licence
24. Application for and issue or renewal of driver's licence
25. Power of Director in respect of examination and testing of applicant for learner's or driver’s licenceNotwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in this Act, the Director may, whenever he deems it expedient, direct where by which examiner an applicant for a learner’s or driver’s licence shall be examined and tested and at which driver’s licence testing centre such applicant may apply for a learner’s or driver’s licence.
26. Holders of licence to drive motor vehicle shall give notice of change of particularsWhen the holder of a motor vehicle driver’s licence which was issued under this Part has changed his place of residence permanently or his name he shall, within fourteen days after such change, notify the Director of his new residential and postal address or his new name as the case may be.
27. Right of appeal to Director
28. When licence not issued in terms of this Act deemed to be driver's licence
29. Suspension or cancellation by Director of learner's or driver's licence
30. Lapsing of endorsement on licence
31. Cancellation or amendment of endorsement on licence
32. Driving instructor to be licensed
33. Application for driving instructor’s licence
34. Licence and classification of driving instructorWhere the Director is satisfied that an applicant referred to in section 33 fulfills the competency and classification qualifications pertaining to the specific category of the application, he shall license and classify such applicant.
35. Suspension and cancellation of driving instructor’s licenceThe Director may suspend for such period as he may deem fit, or cancel, the licence of a driving instructor if such instructor—
36. Right of appeal to Minister
37. Driving school to be licensedNo person or organization shall act as a driving school unless he or it is licensed under section 39.
38. Application for driving school licence
39. Licence and classification of driving schoolsWhere the Director is satisfied that an applicant referred to in section 38 fulfils the competency and classification qualifications as prescribed pertaining to the specific category of the application, he shall licence and classify such applicant.
40. Suspension and cancellation of driving school licenceThe Director may, upon giving reasons in writing, suspend for a stated period or cancel, the license of a driving school if such driving school—
41. Right of appeal to Minister
42. Learner’s or driver’s licence issued contrary to provisions of this part to be voidA learner’s or driver’s licence issued contrary to the provisions of this Part shall be void and upon the request of the Director, or a traffic police officer, as the case may be, the holder of such licence shall forthwith submit it to the Director, or such traffic police officer, as the case may be, who shall cancel the licence:Provided that the traffic police officer may cancel such licence only with the prior approval of the Director.
43. Use of learner’s or drivers licence by another person prohibitedNo person who is the holder of a learner’s or driver’s licence shall allow such licence to be used by any other person.
44. Unlicensed driver not to be employed or permitted to drive motor vehicleNo person who is the owner or operator or is in charge or control of a motor vehicle shall employ or permit any other person to drive such vehicle on a public road unless such other person is licensed under this Part to drive the vehicle.
45. Permit required by professional driver
46. Prescribing of classification and extent of professional driving permitSubject to the provisions of this Part—
47. Application for professional driving permit
48. Registration of professional driverIf the Director is satisfied that the applicant referred to in section 47 fulfils the prescribed requirements for the issue to him of a professional driving permit, he shall register such applicant as a professional driver.
49. Issue of professional driving permitAfter the Director has registered an applicant as a professional driver under section 48, the Director shall issue in the prescribed manner a professional driving permit to the applicant.
50. Suspension or cancellation of professional driving permit by Director
51. Right of appeal to Minister
52. Driver of motor vehicle in respect of which operator is registered to hold professional driving permitNo person who—
53. Professional driving permit issued contrary to provisions of this Part to be voidAny professional driving permit issued contrary to the provisions of this Part shall be void, and the holder thereof shall, on demand by the Director or by a traffic police officer, surrender forthwith such permit to the Director or such traffic police officer.
54. Drivers to comply with driving hours
55. Certain classes of motor vehicles to contain recording device to measure time
56. Duties of operator and driver of certain class of motor vehicle with regard to recordsThe duties of an operator and a driver of a motor vehicle of a class referred to in section 54 (1), in relation to the maintenance and preservation of records of driving hours produced by the recording device referred to in section 55 (1) shall be as prescribed.
57. Records produced by recording device may be removed and analyzed
58. Production of licence and permit to court
59. Court may issue order for endorsement, suspension or cancellation of licence or permit disqualify person from obtaining licence or permit
60. On conviction of certain offences licence and permit shall be suspended for minimum period and learner’s or driver's licence cannot be obtained
61. Procedure subsequent to endorsement, suspension or cancellation of licence or permit
Part VI – Fitness of vehicles
62. Motor vehicle inspection station to be registered
63. Application for registration of motor vehicle inspection station
64. Registration and classification of motor vehicle inspection stationWhere upon receipt of an application referred to in section 63 the Director is satisfied that with regard to the motor vehicle inspection station concerned the prescribed requirements for registration of such a motor vehicle inspection station have been met, the Director shall register and classify the station upon the conditions and in the manner as may be prescribed and shall give notice of such registration and classification in the Gazette.
65. Persons empowered to examine vehicles exempted from liability for damageNo person who is empowered under this Act to examine, inspect or to order the examination or inspection of or to issue any other directions concerning any vehicle under this Act shall be liable for the loss of any such vehicle or the contents thereof or for any damage caused to any such vehicles or the contents thereof resulting from any action taken by such person in good faith and without negligence and in the intended exercise of any such powers.
66. Suspension or cancellation of registration of motor vehicle inspection stationThe Director may, if in his opinion a registered motor vehicle inspection station no longer complies with the requirements referred to in section 64, suspend for such period as he may deem fit or cancel the registration of a motor vehicle inspection station.
67. Right of appeal to Minister
68. Appointment of inspector of motor vehicle inspection stations
69. Certificate of fitness required in respect of motor vehicle
70. Application for certificate of fitness
71. Examination of motor vehicle and issue of certificate of fitness
72. Prohibition against licensing of unroadworthy vehicleA motor vehicle which does not comply with the requirements referred to in section 69 (3) (b) shall not be licensed or relicensed.
73. Prohibition against holding of more than one certificate of fitness in respect of the same motor vehicleNo person shall in respect of the same motor vehicle hold more than one valid certificate of fitness at any one time.
74. Certificate of fitness to be affixed to motor vehicle
75. Authority conveyed by certificate of fitness subject to provisions of this ActThe conditions of a certificate of fitness relating to a motor vehicle and the authority conveyed thereby shall not be construed as derogating from any provisions of this Act and in the event of any inconsistence between the conditions of such certificate of fitness and any provisions of this Act, the latter shall prevail.
76. Effect of alteration of motor vehicle on certificate of fitness
77. Right of appeal to Director
78. Voidness of certificate of fitness issued contrary to provisions of this PartAny certificate of fitness issued contrary to the provisions of this Part shall be void and the holder thereof shall, on demand by the motor vehicle inspection station which issued such certificate of fitness, an examiner or by a traffic police officer, forthwith surrender such certificate of fitness to such motor vehicle inspection station, examiner or traffic police officer.
79. Suspension or cancellation of certificate of fitness by Director
80. Notice to discontinue operation of motor vehicle
Part VII – Operator fitness
81. Registration of operator
82. Issue of road service permit
83. Road service permit to be displayed on motor vehicleNo person shall operate a motor vehicle of any class referred to in section 81 (1) on a public road unless a valid road service permit is displayed on such motor vehicle.
84. Proof of certain facts
85. Duties of operatorThe operator of a motor vehicle shall—
86. Power of Director in respect of motor vehicle, drivers and activities of operators
87. Appeal to Minister
88. Act or omission of manager, agent or employee of operator
Part VIII – Road traffic signs, general speed limit and parking fees
89. Minister to prescribe road traffic signs
90. Authority to display road traffic sign
91. Failure to obey road traffic sign
92. Speed limit
93. Certain drivers may exceed general speed limitNotwithstanding the provisions of section 92, the driver of a vehicle belonging to—
94. Certain classes of motor vehicles to contain recording device to measure speed
95. Power of local authority to collect parking fees
Part IX – Rules of the road
96. Vehicle to be driven on left side of roadway
97. Driving on divided public road
98. Passing of vehicle
99. Crossing or entering public road or traffic lane
100. Driving signalsThe driver of a vehicle on a public road who intends to stop such vehicle or suddenly reduce speed thereof or to turn such vehicle to the left or to the right or to move such vehicle to the left or right on the roadway shall give a conspicuous signal of his intention, visible to any person approaching him from the front or from the rear or from the side and of a duration sufficient to warn any such person of his intention.
101. Right of way at certain road junctionsThe driver of a vehicle on a public road shall, when he intends to enter any portion of a public road which constitutes a junction of two or more public roads where vehicular traffic is required to move around a traffic island within such junction, yield the right of way to all vehicular traffic approaching from his right within such junction, unless his entry into such junction is controlled by an instruction given by a traffic police officer or a direction conveyed by a road traffic sign requiring him to act differently.
102. Procedure when turning
103. Towing of vehiclesNo person may operate any vehicle on a public road while towing or drawing another vehicle save in the manner prescribed for the towing or drawing of any vehicle by another vehicle on a public road.
104. Stopping of vehiclesExcept in order to avoid an accident or in compliance with a road traffic sign or with a direction given by a traffic police officer or for any cause beyond the control of the driver, no person shall stop a vehicle on the roadway of a public road—
105. Parking of vehicles
106. Certain vehicles may be stopped and parked at any place where necessary
107. Compulsory stopThe driver of a vehicle on a public road shall stop such vehicle in compliance with any direction conveyed by a road traffic sign or given by a police officer in uniform.
108. General duties of driver of vehicle or passenger on public road
109. Duties relating to motor cycle, motor tricycle or motor quadrucycle
110. Vehicle causing excessive noiseNo person shall operate or permit to be operated on a public road a vehicle causing noise—
111. Use of hooterNo person shall on a public road use the audible warning device or hooter of a vehicle except when such use is necessary in order to comply with the provisions of this Act or on the grounds of safety.
112. Riding on pedal cycles
113. Device running on rails
114. Animal on public road
115. Animal-drawn vehicles
116. Pedestrian’s right of way in pedestrian crossing
117. Duties of pedestrians
118. Racing and sport on a public road
119. Hindering or obstructing traffic on a public road
120. Vehicle left or abandoned on a public road
121. Damage to public roadNo person shall on a public road—
122. Trading on public roadExcept—
123. Requirement on vehicles to stop for President
Part X – Accidents and accident reports
124. Duty of driver in event of accident
125. Garage to keep record of motor vehicle involved in accidents
Part XI – Reckless or negligent driving, inconsiderate driving, driving while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or a drug having a narcotic effect and miscellaneous offences
126. Reckless or negligent driving
127. Inconsiderate driving
128. Driving while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drug having narcotic effect or with excessive amount of alcohol in blood
129. Unauthorized acts in relation to vehicle
130. Furnishing false informationWithout derogating from any other provision of this Act, no person shall—
131. Unlawful acts in relation to registration number, registration mark or certain documents
Part XII – Presumptions and legal procedure
132. Presumption in regard to public road, freeway and public road in urban areas
133. Presumption in regard to mass ascertained by a mass-measuring bridge or other mass-measuring instrumentWhere in any criminal proceedings arising out of an alleged contravention of this Act, evidence to prove such contravention is given of any mass as ascertained by means of a mass-measuring bridge or other mass-measuring instrument, such mass shall be deemed to be correct until the contrary is proved.
134. Presumption in regard to gross vehicle mass of motor vehicleWhere in any prosecution under this Act it is alleged that an offence was committed in relation to the gross vehicle mass of a motor vehicle, the mass so alleged shall, in the absence of evidence as contemplated in section 133, be presumed, until the contrary is proved, to be the gross vehicle mass of such vehicle.
135. Proof of gross vehicle mass of motor vehicleAny document purporting to have been issued by a manufacturer and stating the gross vehicle mass of any particular model of motor vehicle manufactured by him, shall be prima facie evidence as to the gross vehicle mass of such model.
136. Presumption that owner drove or parked vehicle
137. Presumption in regard to officersIn any prosecution under this Act, the fact that any person purports to act or has purported to act as a traffic police officer or an examiner, or any other authorized person, shall be prima facie evidence of his appointment and authority so to act:Provided that the provisions of this section shall not apply with regard to a prosecution on a charge relating to impersonation.
Part XIII – Registers and records
138. Register of records to be kept
139. Copy of entry in register or record to be evidence
140. Cognizance may be taken of information contained in register or recordThe Minister or the Director may, in exercising a discretion or taking a decision under this Act, take cognizance of the information contained in a register or record contemplated in section 138.
Part XIV – Compulsory third party insurance
141. Users of motor vehicle to be insured against third party risks
142. Saving in respect of liabilityA person charged with using a motor vehicle in contravention of section 144 shall not be convicted if he proves that such motor vehicle did not belong to him and was not in his possession under a contract of hire or of loan, that he was using the motor vehicle in the course of his employment and that he neither knew nor had reason to believe that there was not in force in relation to such motor vehicle a policy of insurance or security as compiled with the requirements of this Part.
143. Requirements in respect of policies of insuranceIn order to comply with the requirements of this Part a policy of insurance must be a policy which—
144. Restriction of liabilityA policy of insurance shall not be required to cover—
145. Requirements in respect of securitiesIn order to comply with the requirements of this Part a security must—
146. Certificate of security
147. Certain conditions in policies of insurance to be of no effect
148. Right of injured party to proceed against insurer
149. Restriction of liability in respect of passengers in public service vehicles to be voidSo far as any contract for the conveyance of a passenger in a public service vehicle purports to negative or to restrict the liability of any person in respect of any claim which may be made against that person in respect of the death of or bodily injury to the passenger while being carried in, entering or alighting from the vehicle or purports to impose any conditions with respect to the enforcement of any such liability, it shall be void.
150. Hospital expensesWhere an insurer makes any payment under the provisions of this Part in respect of the death of or bodily injury to any person who has received treatment in a hospital in respect of the fatal or other bodily injury so arising the insurer shall also pay to such hospital the expenses reasonably incurred by the hospital in affording such treatment to an amount as prescribed for each person so treated as either an in-patient or as an out-patient.
151. Certificate of insurance
152. Driver to give name and address
153. Making false statements
154. Duty of insurer when policy is cancelled
155. Duplicate certificate of insuranceNo insurer shall issue a replacement certificate of insurance until he has made such enquiries as to satisfy him beyond reasonable doubt that the original certificate of insurance has been lost or destroyed or otherwise rendered unusable.
Part XV – General provisions
156. Exemption from previous relating to packingNotwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in any law, a local authority may, in such circumstances and subject to such conditions as it may deem expedient, exempt—
157. Doubt concerning use or classification of motor vehicleIf, for the purposes of this Act, doubt arises as to the use to which any vehicle is put or the classification of any vehicle, such matter shall be referred to the Director.
158. Vehicle and load may be exempted from provisions of this ActThe Director may, subject to such conditions and upon payment of such fees or charges as he may determine, authorize in writing, either generally or specifically, the use on a public road of a vehicle which does not comply with the provisions of this Act or the conveyance on a public road of passengers or any load otherwise than in accordance with the provisions of this Act.
159. Director may authorize certain refunds
160. Inspection for ensuring that provisions of this Act are being given effect to
161. Variation of prescribed formThe Minister may, in such circumstances as he may deem expedient, authorize any authority to use, in substitution for a form prescribed for a particular purpose, a form which varies from such prescribed form, and in respect of such authority such varied form shall be deemed to be the prescribed form for that purpose.
162. Duplicate of document or token
163. Signature upon documentsAny person who is unable to sign his name shall, whenever his signature is required upon any document under this Act, impress in place thereof his left thumb print upon the space within which he would otherwise have been required to sign his name, and if his left thumb print is not available, he shall substitute therefore another of his fingerprints, and in such latter event the document so marked shall then be endorsed by the officer in whose presence the print was made, identifying the finger used.
164. Service of notices
165. Application to the Government
166. Seizure of vehicles
167. Offences and penalties
168. ForfeitureThe court convicting any person of an offence under section 167 (1) as read with section 83, or a regulation made under section 181 (1) (d), (l), (n) or (q), may, without notice to any person, declare a vehicle or its load or both which was or were used in the commission of the offence and which was or were seized under the provisions of this Act, or the convicted person’s rights in such vehicle or load or both, to be forfeited to the Government:Provided that such declaration shall not affect any right which any person other than the convicted person may have to the vehicle or load or both, if it is proved that that other person did not know that that vehicle or its load or both was or were being used or would be used in the commission of the offence concerned, or that he could not prevent such use.
Part XVI – Traffic Court
170. Minister may prescribe offencesNotwithstanding anything in this Act or any other written law the Minister may prescribe a schedule of traffic offences (hereinafter referred to as prescribe offences) which may be dealt with and prosecuted in any area in which a Traffic Court exercises jurisdiction in accordance with this section or any rules made hereunder; and the Minister may for the purposes of this section prescribe statutory maximum penalties for such offences, which shall not exceed the penalties prescribed for such offences elsewhere in or under this Act.
171. Statutory maximum penalty to have effectA statutory maximum penalty prescribed for a prescribed offence shall, notwithstanding any other penalty prescribed for such offence by or under this Act, have effect where the person charged with such offence submits a written plea of guilty which is accepted in accordance with this section.
172. Notification of a prescribed offence by an authorized officerNotwithstanding anything elsewhere in this Act or any other written law, an authorized officer may, if it is under his authority to do so and he considers it appropriate, serve either personally or by affixing the same prominently to the vehicle concerned, upon the owner, driver or person in charge of control of any motor vehicle who the authorized officer reasonably believes to have committed any of the prescribed offences, a notification of a traffic offence (hereinafter referred to as a notification) in the prescribed form charging such person with having committed the offence or offences indicated in the notification and requiring such person to attend the Traffic Court specified in the notification to answer such charge or charges at such date and time (being not sooner than twenty-one days after the date of such service) as is specified in such notification.
173. Person served with notification may send a written plea of guilty to Traffic CourtSubject to section 176 a person served with a notification under this section shall not be obliged to attend the Traffic Court concerned in answer to such notification if he has pleaded guilty unequivocally in writing and sent the notification, together with the prescribed proof of payment for the amount of the statutory maximum penalty or penalties for the offence or offences to which he has pleaded guilty, by prepaid registered post or by hand, to that Traffic Court so as to reach the Court not later than the day and time indicated in the notification for his attendance:Provided that where an authorized officer considers that in all the circumstances a plea of guilty in writing should not be accepted he may; by notice in the prescribed form under his hand, served on the accused and on the Traffic Court concerned at least seven clear days before the date indicated in the notification, require the accused to attend the Traffic Court in person on the day and at the time indicated in the notification.
174. Notification to be placed before the Traffic CourtA copy of the notification shall be placed before the Traffic Court concerned at the time fixed for the attendance of the accused to answer the charge or charges and unless that Court otherwise directs, such copy shall be used as a charge sheet.
175. Procedure after a plea of guiltyA Traffic Court may, on receipt of a plea of guilty, either in writing, or by the accused in person, proceed to conviction and may, after considering any mitigating circumstances stated in writing or personally by the accused, pass sentence, which in the case of a written plea of guilty shall be the statutory maximum penalty unless the Traffic Court for special reasons decides to remit the penalty in whole or in part, in which case it shall direct that the penalty or part thereof be refunded to the accused.
176. Where a Traffic Court is not satisfied that a written plea of guilty is unequivocalWhere a Traffic Court is not satisfied that a written plea of guilty is unequivocal or where, for good reason shown, the Court decides not to accept a written plea of guilty, it shall issue a summons requiring the accused to attend before it or any other court to answer the charge or charges indicated in the notification, on such date and at such time as shall be specified in the summons.
177. Where accused pleads not guiltyWhere an accused appears before a Traffic Court and pleads not guilty to the charge or charges indicated on the notification, the Traffic Court may hear and determine the charge or charges forthwith or may adjourn the proceedings to another date either before itself or any other court.
178. Where a person fails to attend Traffic Court after notificationWhere any person, having been served with a notification issued in accordance with this section, fails to attend the Traffic Court concerned on the day and at the time specified in such notification and has not pleaded guilty in writing and paid the statutory maximum penalty in the prescribed manner indicated before such day and time (and a person on whom has been served a notice in the prescribed form under the proviso to section 173 shall be deemed not to have pleaded guilty in writing for the purposes of this subsection) he may be brought before the Traffic Court, either by summons or by warrant of arrest, and, unless he shows good cause why he has failed to attend in accordance with such notification he shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable forthwith, by order of the court, to a fine of K5,000 and to imprisonment for three months, and the court may thereupon proceed to deal with the charge or charges indicated in the notification, or may adjourn the hearing of such charge or charges to another date before itself or any other court.
179. Registered owner of vehicle to be liable where there is failure to comply with notificationWhere any person served with a notification under this section fails to comply with such notification then the registered owner of the vehicle concerned shall be liable for the offence:Provided that such owner shall not be liable for the offence if he satisfies the court that he was not driving or in charge or control of the vehicle at the relevant time, and that he has, upon being so requested by an authorized officer or the court, given to the authorized officer or to the court all the information at his disposal, or which should reasonably be at his disposal, to enable the person who was driving or in charge or control, of the vehicle at the relevant time to be brought before the court.
180. Unauthorized person not to remove notification affixed to a vehicleNo person other than the person to whom it is addressed, or a person authorized by such person in that behalf, shall remove from a vehicle a notification which has been affixed thereto by an authorized officer under this section, or any portion of such notification, or willfully tear, deface or destroy any such notification.
Part XVII – Regulations and by-laws
181. Power of Minister to make regulations
182. Power of local authority to make by-laws
183. Local authority may determine feesA local authority may determine the fees to be charged for any purpose contemplated in section 182.
Part XVIII – Repeal and savings
184. Repeal and savings
History of this document
31 December 2014 this version
15 January 1998
|Road Traffic (Mangochi Town Council) (Traffic, Road Safety and Parking of Motor Vehicles) By-laws, 2020||Government Notice 39 of 2020|