Following the unfortunate spate of break-ins and theft at the Waltloo, Akasia and Centurion Licensing Centres and the consequent frustration or motorists, the City of Tshwane wishes to inform the affected persons of alternative provisions made in this regard.
"In terms of the law, a driving licence card holder may renew their licence at any licensing centre in the country, and any other convenient testing centre may be approached in this regard. This implies that motorists need not get fines for expired licence disks, as they can renew these at any nearest post office," said Alderman Derrick Kissoonduth, MMC for Community Safety
A limited driver's licence card renewal service has been introduced at the Centurion Licensing Centre from Thursday, 13 July 2017.
Applicants in possession of an optometrist's eye test certificate will be assisted. However, due to the break-in, this service is unfortunately limited to about 100 clients per day.
Applicants who visit the Akasia and Bronkhorstspruit Licensing Centres are encouraged to bring along an optometrist's certificate. This shortens the renewal procedure.
The Executive Mayor of Tshwane, Solly Msimanga, condemned the robberies during a press briefing last week, stating that he is "angered by these robberies and will do all that is within our power to ensure that those responsible for these robberies are brought to book. This is why I will be conducting oversight visits at the affected licensing centres to see for myself the state of affairs and to determine what further long-term steps will be taken by this administration to ensure that these robberies are prevented so that our people may get the necessary services they deserve."
Incident 1 at Waltloo Licensing Centre
The Waltloo Licensing Centre was robbed on 1 June 2017. The following equipment was stolen:
- Seven live-capturing computers used for eye testing and thumb imprints;
- eNaTIS computers;
- One revenue information management system; and
- Three of the City's computers.
Incident 2 at Waltloo Licensing Centre
The same licensing centre was robbed again on 20 June 2017. Security personnel and officials of the City were assaulted and injured by unknown assailants. The robbers escorted a security guard to the safe and stole an undisclosed amount of money.
Appreciating that these incidents have inconvenienced our residents and showed disregard for our commitment to service delivery, the following services will be rendered at Waltloo Licensing Centre despite the break-ins:
- Collection of driver's licences;
- Application for learner's and driver's licences; and
- Testing for learner's and driver's licences.
Unfortunately the centre will not be in a position to renew professional driver's licences and ordinary driver's licences until the equipment has been replaced.
Centurion Licensing Centre
The Executive Mayor also had a brief report from the acting Chief of Police, Ms Jenny Malan, on the recent break-in at the Centurion Licensing Centre during the night of 4 July 2017. A preliminary investigation has revealed that PCs, camera equipment and eNaTIS screens were stolen.
The theft prompted an immediate shutdown of the Centurion Licensing Centre to allow the South African Police Service to conduct an investigation without hindrances.
This crime resulted in the following:
- From 6 July 2017, only learner's licence testing, driver's licence testing and driver's licence card collection can be sustained.
- No driver's licence card renewals are possible at this stage.
- Negotiations are in progress to normalise the services as soon as is possible. All stolen computer infrastructure, including their procurement, installation and maintenance, falls under the jurisdiction of the Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport in conjunction with the Driving Licence Card Account Entity (National Department of Transport). The nearest date for resumption of all services will be communicated.
Akasia Licensing Centre
Located in the north of the capital, the Akasia Licensing Centre experienced a break-in on 6 June 2017. Fortunately nothing was taken, and the quick response of the Tshwane Metropolitan Police Department and SAPS yielded the arrest of two people. The robbers attempted to access the safe but were unsuccessful.
We are thankful to our men and women who acted quickly and swiftly and we will institute measures to ensure that similar results are forthcoming at the other licensing centres.
The public is reminded that for driver's licence testing or related services they may visit any other operational centre. This means that Tshwane residents are not restricted to Tshwane centres.
The City together with the TMPD prioritised speedy security and safety measures to prevent a re-occurrence of such incidents. Outside and inside security technology will be upgraded to the highest standard. This intervention will be rolled out to all other licensing centres in Tshwane.
We are cautiously optimistic that the police will arrest the perpetrators who are hell-bent on disrupting service delivery in Tshwane. The City itself will also not be deterred in its endeavour to make Tshwane a safe and responsive city. Hence we can assure the residents of Tshwane that further service delivery innovation is under consideration and will be announced in due course.
At this stage, unfortunately, a time frame cannot be determined due to the multitude of processes that have to be finalised, including but not limited to our engagement with the relevant provincial structures. Suffice it to say that the City is working on all fronts to expedite the processes and prevent the inconvenience caused by such robberies.