Ministers urge matrics to celebrate responsibly

ON Monday November 26, the majority of National Senior Certificate (NSC) candidates wrote their last examination - English Home Language and English First Additional Language, Paper 3.
For the remainder of this week, learners will write Music Paper 1 and 2, Agricultural Management Practices, and Design. This means that this week, many candidates will be heading to annual matric rage events in towns across the province, particularly in Hermanus and Plettenberg Bay.
Said Western Cape Education minister Debbie Schäfer: “Our matrics have worked very hard to get to this point in their lives and while they deserve to celebrate, we appeal to them to do so responsibly.
“We encourage all candidates who will be participating in Matric Rage parties to exercise moderation, and to use additional registered car services and public transport services that are available when travelling between venues if they are under the influence of alcohol.”
Provincial Transport and Public Works minister Donald Grant urged matrics to exercise caution when on the roads.
• Always make sure that there is a responsible driver that is not under the influence of alcohol or substances that affect their ability to drive.
• Always obey the speed limit and other rules of the road.
• Avoid distractions while driving, including the use of cellphones.
• Avoid late night driving where possible, or driving when you are tired.
• Ensure that driver and passengers are always buckled up. It is usually the passengers that are not buckled up that kill people. Not wearing a seatbelt is against the law and extremely dangerous. Unbuckled passengers become wrecking balls in a collision, and kill and severely injure others, even passengers who have buckled up.
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Provincial and Municipal traffic services are on high alert over this period, and ready for any eventuality. A no-nonsense approach will again be adopted to any transgressions during this time.
“Let us work together to ensure that this time of celebration isn’t marred by reckless and irresponsible behaviour that endangers lives. We must work in partnership to avoid any unnecessary injury or death at all costs.
“Just last year alone, Provincial Traffic Services, together with our municipal partners and the SAPS, conducted various operations around the Matric Rage period which included a total of 27 operations focused on checking vehicle safety, speed, and driving under the influence.
“Two male adults were arrested for driving under the influence in Plettenberg Bay over this period at these operations. This year we will be focusing on making our roads even safer.
“We will continue to have a strong law enforcement presence on our roads over this period, and encourage those who will be attending parties to celebrate responsibly, and follow all the rules of the road. Alcohol and the roads simply do not mix,” said Grant.
“We are grateful that such celebrations in recent times have been conducted without any serious incident. We hope that this year will be no different.”
“I appeal to all matric candidates not to spoil what should be a well-earned celebration. You have the rest of your lives ahead of you, and a moment of irresponsibility can have a lifetime of consequences,” said Schäfer.