By Anna Shilongo
Wilfred Brock, the Transport Information Divisional Manager of the Roads Authority (RA) has expressed disappointment with motor vehicle owners who have not yet settled their outstanding licence fees despite the amnesty period given to motorists.
Despite the amnesty from February to May 30 for those with outstanding licence fees, only 35 percent took advantage of the amnesty and have had their debts redeemed.
The amnesty was granted to persons whose debts arose on or before 31 December 2007.
There are only two weeks left for motor vehicle owners to have their debts cancelled.
“All motor vehicle owners are hereby requested to make use of the time still available to avoid the last day rush which may cause an inconvenience to motor vehicle owners,” he said.
Brock also took time to warn motor vehicle owners who have not yet responded to the amnesty to do so as a matter of urgency, failure of which they could be taken to court.
He said motor vehicle owners who fail to pay must therefore expect to receive letters of demand in June 2008.
All vehicle owners are therefore advised to make use of the offer of amnesty before it closes to avoid the drastic measures of being summoned to court.
Vehicle owners are encouraged to take along a copy of their identity document and details of their motor vehicle when applying for amnesty.
The Roads Authority also appealed to motor vehicle owners who might have sold their vehicles in the past to verify this with any NaTIS office whether such vehicles have been registered in the names of the new buyers.
“It is possible that the vehicle that was sold is still driven in the name of the seller if the seller did not notify the Natis office on the approved form for change of ownership,” stressed Brock.
Failure to heed this call, Brock said, the sellers might find themselves on the wrong side of the law and could face possible court summons.
“Such persons are called upon to deregister their vehicles while the amnesty is still on.”
Moreover, he told New Era that from June 1, 2008, no person would be allowed to sell a motor vehicle which is not licensed.
“This means that if a buyer bought a motor vehicle which has not been licensed and there are outstanding licences fees which have accumulated over time, such motor vehicle shall not be registered with Natis before such debt has been settled,” he added.
If the person has debt on their name due to a vehicle licence that has expired and one wishes to obtain a duplicate driving licence, the duplicate will not be issued unless one first settles the outstanding debt.
The divisional manager says motor vehicle owners have been given enough time to have their debt cancelled.
Subsequent to the ministry’s decision, an information campaign was launched by the relevant authority, with the aim to sensitise motor vehicle owners with outstanding licence fees on how to go about cancelling their debt.
During the past few months, this information has been in both print and electronic media and was translated into the different indigenous languages to ensure that it reaches all recipients.
Once motor vehicle owners let this opportunity slip through, it may take sometime before other arrangements are made.