§ 47. Mr. Strauss
asked the Minister of Transport whether he will introduce legislation to provide that the penalty of disqualification to drive as a result of committing three offences in two years under Part I and Part II of Schedule 1 to the Road Traffic Act, 1962, shall be applied only when the first offence is committed after 29th May, the date on which he has declared that this part of the Act shall come into operation.
§ Mr. Marples
No. Section 5(3) of the Road Traffic Act, 1962, provides that a minimum period of six months disquali-74W fication shall be imposed where a person who is convicted of an offence specified in Part I or Part II of Schedule 1 has within three years immediately preceding the commission of the offence and since the coming into operation of that subsection been convicted on no less than two occasions of such an offence and particulars of these earlier convictions have been endorsed under Section 7. The operation of this provision is thus expressly related to the date of the convictions for the two earlier offences and not to the date on which they were committed. The Act has been on the Statute Book since 1st August, 1962, so that the public have had ample opportunity to become aware of this provision and of the fact that I could bring it into operation at any time by order. The provision in effect provides that in assessing the consequences of the third conviction certain previous convictions shall be taken into account. There is nothing unusual in this. Taking these points into consideration and the fact that the Act was so recently approved by Parliament, I see no reason why it should now be amended so as to exclude from its operation cases where one or more of the offences has been committed before the 29th May, 1963.