Buying a learner and driver’s licence is unfortunately becoming common place in South Africa. Today, bribery within the licencing industry is often referred to as ‘cold drink’ or ‘tjotjo’, which can be financially costly and emotionally taxing for those who simply cannot afford the bribe – but still need to obtain their licence.


Not only can the paying of bribes lead to unqualified and unsuitable drivers being allowed on the roads, but it can also place a substantial burden on honest people needing a licence and trying to obtain theirs through the appropriate processes. Obtaining your learners licence in a legal and correct manner is the right thing to do. Not only does your learners licence act as a permit that proves that you have the basic knowledge of a vehicle and the pertinent rules of the road but it affords you the confidence to develop the right skills to drive safely on our roads.

The Road Traffic Management Corporations (RTMC) says it believes that if the skills levels and the ability of drivers are improved, road deaths would be minimised. RTMC says most accidents are caused by young drivers and the number of accidents which are caused by small vehicles has increased by 47%.

In fact, according to research presented by Arrive Alive, inexperienced drivers more often than not, underestimate hazardous situations and often tend to disobey the rules of the road because of a lack of education and skills. The report also stated that:

  • During the first six months of solo driving, newly licenced drivers are more likely to get involved in fatal crashes;
  • Even after the six months of driving alone, younger drivers are two to four times more likely to be in a fatal crash than experienced drivers;
  • The high incidents of accident rates show that many newly licenced drivers are still uneducated and unskilled to handle vehicle safety.

The lack of education and the high incidence of reckless (often inexperienced) drivers on South African Roads is inexcusable. If we teach learner drivers good driving principles as well as the rules of the road, we stand a better chance of increasing the number of well-disciplined drivers on our roads, while also reducing the number of traffic accidents.