Deregistration awaits unlicensed vehicles

HARARE - Government is taking the critical step of cancelling registration of motor vehicles operating outside the confines of the law, the Daily News can report.

In terms of the law, all motor vehicles in Zimbabwe must be properly registered and licensed for them to ply the country’s roads.

Zimbabwe has over two million vehicles on its roads, of which a sizeable number are neither licensed nor registered.

As of 2014, only 1,2 million cars were registered by the Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara).

In a notice, the registrar of the Central Vehicle Registry (CVR) George Makoni advised the public of the department’s intension to cancel registration of vehicles which have not been licensed or exempted for period of two or more years as of July 31, 2018.

“It is hereby notified in terms of Section 12 of the Vehicle Registration and Licensing Act (Chapter 13:14), that the registrar intends to cancel the registration of vehicles not licenced or exempted for a period of two or more years at July 31, 2018.

“Affected parties are hereby notified to approach the Central Vehicle Registry to regularise their vehicles of the Zimbabwe National Road Administration to negotiate a payment plan or pay the outstanding arrears within 30 days from the date of this publication of this notice,” Makoni said.

Motorists have reacted angrily to the move.

Due to the tough operating environment, not many motorists are up-to-date with payments for their vehicle licences or registration.

As a result, the country has a significant population of vehicles whose registration needs to be regularised, including those that are still using old number plates.

It is also said that a number of vehicles do not even have number plates, with their owners playing a hide-and-seek game with the police.

This has seen other motorists forging licenses, thus depriving Zinara of the much-needed revenue.

Zinara is estimated to be losing more than $20 million annually.

The current vehicle number plates were introduced into use in March, 2005.

Their adoption enable law enforcement authorities to positively identify the person that is or was regarded as the registered owner of a particular vehicle at a particular time during that vehicle’s lifetime, and encourage the new legal owner of a given vehicle to comply with the requirements of the law on the payment of value added tax to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority.

Motorists canvassed by the Daily News said CVR should not rush to pull the plug given the peculiar economic circumstances that most motorists find themselves under.

Others said the unit, which operates under the ministry of Transport and Infrastructure Development should run awareness campaigns to enlighten motorists about its intentions and how they would be affected.

“My car has been parked (for a long time) so it is going to be difficult (for me) to pay licensing fees for all that time because I don’t even have a cent to pay for the service. I am also hearing of this for the first time,” Brian Chatenhedza, a motorist said.

Gaven Kagodora, another motorist said: “They should teach us about it through radios for people to know what to do in the event that one’s car has been off the road for a long time.

“I say this because many of my friends’ cars are have been parked for extended periods because they don’t have the money to take them to the garage or to have them licenced and therefore they are now into serious arrears”.

Nyasha Chikari, another motorist, lamented the economic challenges which she believes to be contributing to many motorists defaulting or dodging payments.

“The problem is that we have a lot of economic challenges and it is tough for everyone, so they (CVR) have to be lenient by scrapping off debts.

“Other people are no longer working, while others just lost their jobs like when vendors were driven outside central business districts,” Chakari said.

While the stringent measures are depressing for some, commuter omnibus operator, James Kadzunge, welcomed the move saying at least government has opened the window for
motorists to put their houses in order.

“I am in the process of fixing my car which has been parked at home. I neither knew about the notice, nor the exemption process.

“However, I am glad that I can go and see CVR about it because my car still needs to be fixed and paying large amounts of money may be hard for me,” Kadzunge said.

Comments (1)

Does Zinara have any idea of the number of unregistered vehicles on the roads? I see very few vehicles without registration plates on the roads , maybe two or three a year. If they de-register unlicensed vehicles they will never be able to check any vehicles history following four different unconnected series of number plates since Independence.

citizen - 12 November 2018

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