THE Vehicle Inspection Department (VID) will start conducting road tests and issuing driver’s licences from tomorrow after it closed in March due to Covid-19 induced lockdown.
Cabinet okayed the resumption of VID operations last month.
Since being given the nod to reopen, the department is understood to have been developing operating procedures and health protocols in line with Covid-19 guidelines.
Transport and Infrastructural Development Permanent Secretary Engineer Amos Marawa told our Bulawayo Bureau that VID had finalised developing the procedures in line with the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommendations.
The guidelines were approved by Cabinet and the National Covid-19 Taskforce.
“VID has developed operating guidelines and standard operating procedures which are in line with WHO guidelines and were approved by the National Taskforce on Covid-19, and Cabinet.
“These will guide the operations of VID during the pandemic,” Eng Marawa said.
The ministry has since issued a circular to all depots instructing them to start conducting tests and issuing drivers’ licences from tomorrow.
Following the suspension of operations, Government extended the validity of provisional driving licences and defensive driving certificates by six months to give room for holders to remain eligible for testing.
Meanwhile, in a related development, the Insurance Council of Zimbabwe (ICZ) has challenged the Central Vehicle Registry (CVR) to improve its capacity to issue adequate vehicle registration licences.
In a presentation during a virtual training of journalists, ICZ chief executive officer Mr Tendai Karonga said there were 80 000 unregistered vehicles in the country, yet the CVR only has the capacity to issue 32 000 registration plates up to year-end.
This comes at a time when crimes perpetrated by motorists using unregistered vehicles are on the increase.
“Performance of motor insurance was further affected by the Central Vehicle Registry (CVR)’s inability to register vehicles due to lack of financial resources to produce registration plates. “
This resulted in about 80 000 unregistered and uninsured vehicles on the roads, leading to a loss of the mandatory Third-Party Motor premiums of approximately $60 million.
“Statistics are based on the CVR Registrar’s Report to the Parliamentary Transport Committee on September 28, 2020.
“The situation might persist as CVR has financial resources to provide plates for 32 000 vehicles, leaving more than 48 000 unregistered,” said Mr Karonga.