Ministry of Works explains new changes to driving permits in Uganda

New changes to driving permits in Uganda have been announced by the Ministry of Works and Transport as the permits are expected to come with security features that could reduce cases of fraud and forgery.

Hon. Gen. Katumba Wamala, Minister of Works and Transport said that the issuance of driving permits in Uganda is undergoing a transition process from Uganda Computerized Driving System to the Uganda Driving Licenses System. Hence these new changes to driving permits in Uganda are part of the whole transition process.

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A look at the new changes to driving permits in Uganda

Some of the changes to the driving permits in Uganda that should be expected are compliance with ISO requirements and Tripartite Transport and Transit Facilitation Programme (TTTFP) which aims at having a uniform card for the three regional blocks EAC, SADC and COMESA. Those who receive the new card will be able to drive through member states with almost no restrictions.

The new cards will be valid for 5 years in addition to the existing 1 year and 3 year validity. This will save many drivers’ time in terms of visits and even money spent during these visits.

The Ministry of Works and Transport assures Ugandans about the new security features embedded within the card that will make them hard to forge as it has been in certain instances in the past. The system has been tightly integrated with Police systems for easy verification and issuance of express penalties by the traffic police gadgets.

Drivers of commercial vehicles will receive the Professional Driving Permit (PrDP). These are drivers of passenger vehicles with more than 8 passengers and goods vehicles that carry more than 3500 kg.

Applicants for driving licenses in Uganda will be requested to have National IDs for residents and passports for non-Ugandans. This would definitely address the issue of replication of data and make it easier to trace people via government databases.

The new changes to driving permits in Uganda come after the handover of the role of issuance of driving permits by South African company Face Technologies to Uganda Security Printing Company (USPC). The contract with Face Technologies ended last year in May but was extended as USPC failed to start operations soon after.

Read more: Face Technologies awarded contract extension after USPC fails to take over

The contract was then extended to February 2021 to give USPC sufficient time to prepare and also to ensure that Ugandans kept receiving permits though it was only the Head office that would be functional. USPC failed to take off immediately citing challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The Uganda Security Printing Company will start operations on 1st March 2021.

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