Persons who drive on ET Joshua tarmac without a permit receive warning
Chief Magistrate, Rechanne Browne
May 5, 2023

Persons who drive on ET Joshua tarmac without a permit receive warning

A strong message has been sent to persons who drive on the decommissioned ET Joshua Airport tarmac without having a permit that they will be prosecuted once they are caught.

This was the declaration of Chief Magistrate, Rechanne Browne presiding at the Serious Offences Court this week.

On May 3, the Court was bombarded with traffic related matters involving offenders who drive on the tarmac of the decommissioned airport without owning a driver’s permit or a learner’s permit.

This repeated practice has led the Chief Magistrate to express her disgust and she has threatened to disqualify future offenders who appear before her from obtaining a permit for a specified period of time.

The court, which hears traffic related cases on a Wednesday, commenced on May 3, and a number of persons were fined for driving on the tarmac without a permit. The persons who allow them to drive their vehicles acting as tutors without having the relevant permit will also be dealt with.

When Browne asked a female offender if she has a learner’s permit the defendant responded, “no”, and the magistrate said, “what is this? People just driving so? The lawlessness…”.

She further highlighted the dangerous way in which people drive on the tarmac noting that drivers are “speeding up and down, circling around, smoking up the place and people have asthmatic conditions”.

Browne said that she cannot encourage this type of behaviour noting that it is “silly” . She added, “I like things done decently and in order. Learning to drive is a skill; get it done properly.”

She advised persons to get a learner’s permit and a tutor who has an ‘L’ on their vehicle and go though the correct procedure and when they are finished to show their proper driving competence on the road.

Additionally, Browne made it clear that she will be disqualifying persons who appear before her on similar charges from obtaining a permit for a given period of time.

“Do things decently and in order,” she declared.

“This is like the new form of courtship I’m noticing especially with young men wanting to get ‘jiggy’ with some females, ‘let me go take you to learn how to drive’, hoping to get lucky.”

She made it clear that she does not like this form of courtship and she encouraged the culprits to “go home to the people’s parents and let the parents know who you are and do things properly”.

Furthermore, the Chief Magistrate has asked the police officers who were present to “step up” their presence on the weekends.

“They [offenders] come here and I am disqualifying them. They don’t even have a learners permit to begin with, what nonsense is this?”

Browne added, “Even better yet they get no station bail, let them stay there until Monday morning, it has to stop.”

Sergeant 444 Kenny Jones who was present at court, also sent a message to persons who drive on the tarmac reminding them that the area is a public road.

He told SEARCHLIGHT that “a strong message must be sent to persons who use the area to drive or to learn especially without a permit”.

Jones said that persons who engage in such tutoring, or those who encourage or assist others to drive can be charged for aiding or abetting.

“Persons must remember it is a public road and once they are caught driving a vehicle there without a driver’s licence they will be prosecuted,” Jones said.