In light of the disturbing increase in road fatalities, the Land Transport Authority examiners and driving schools across the country are now under heightened scrutiny.
With just a month remaining in the year, Fiji has already recorded a staggering 72 road deaths, surpassing the annual statistics for the past fifteen years.
This has now prompted the Land Transport Authority to launch a comprehensive investigation into allegations of collusion between driving schools and examiners, potentially compromising the integrity of the process for obtaining driving licenses.
Land Transport Authority Acting Chief Executive Irimaia Rokosawa says the surge in road fatalities has raised serious concerns among authorities and the public alike.
“The Land Transport Authority has been notified of a number of allegations, and that is something we are currently looking into and trying to tighten up our processes. With those allegations, we are trying to put in both detection control and preventative controls.”
Rokosawa says the examination process, designed to evaluate the competence and responsibility of drivers, is now under the microscope.
“Something we are trying to do at the moment is track all those involved in fatal accidents and major accidents and track them down to which branches they were actually tested on, which particular driving examiners tested them, and which driving schools they originated from.”
He says they will also ensure that applicants for driving are not controlled by their respective driving examiners.
Meanwhile, Transport Minister Ro Filipe Tuisawau says he has also received complaints on the issue and has asked LTA to look into it.
Efforts to get comments from the Fiji Driving School Association remain futile.