The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Mpumalanga reiterates the party’s call at a national level to include car vehicle license renewals into the grace period which has been awarded for learner’s licenses, driving license cards, temporary driving license cards and professional driving permits.
For several years now, traffic departments in various local municipalities in the province have been struggling to sufficiently provide services to the residents. On a daily basis residents of Govan Mbeki, The City of Mbombela, Msukaligwa, Albert Luthuli, Victor Khanye, Thaba Chweu and Thembisile Hani face issues in the roll out of learner’s licenses, driver’s licenses and license discs.
A shortage of the paper on which to print the licenses, no ink, and offline systems have all but resulted in people queuing for days on end in order to access services at the above-mentioned traffic departments in our province. This has been further exacerbated by the Covid-19 strain to government departments across the country.
The problems experienced at the affected traffic departments across the province resulted in long queues and residents having to queue on consecutive days because departments are partially and or completely closed on certain days.
In November 2020, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases and the Eastern Cape Health Department warned that “self-defeating tendencies or practices by government departments, including long queues with no social distancing during the payment of social grant… are all contributing to the spread of the virus”. Given that the new variant of Covid-19 is much more infectious, why are residents made to stand in queues for days on end, knowing that there is a potential threat to their lives.
Given the above we further support the DA National call to include the renewal of vehicle licenses in the grace period which has been afforded. In the absence of such an extension, the DA of Mpumalanga will write to MEC for Public Works, Gileon Mashego requesting him to ensure strict compliance to queue management at traffic departments across the province.