Kenyan motorists will via next month use the brand new digital driving licences to pay instant traffic fines, the National Transport as well as also also Safety Authority (NTSA) has said.
which is actually because the brand new licences will feature a payment wallet via where motorists will draw funds to pay instant fines from the event they are arrested for minor traffic offences, NTSA director-general Francis Meja said.
“The smart licences have a payment wallet which enables traffic officers to collect fines via motorists via a gadget,” Mr Meja said in Mombasa on the sidelines of a CEO’s forum hosted by the Vision 2030 secretariat board.
MODE OF PAYMENT
“You can utilize the wallet for various other payments, including fuel however more importantly which will be the mode of payment for traffic fines,” he said.
Kenyan motorists will via May begin to use the long promised digital driving licences which will, among various other things, carry a detailed driver’s profile including traffic breaches.
Last October, the courts blocked the NTSA’s attempt to introduce instant fines through a gazette notice after matatu owners sued.
The instant fines are for minor offences like speeding, riding motorcycles without protective gear, failure to fasten seat belts, pedestrians blocking free passage of cars, driving on footpaths as well as also also travelling with part of the body outside a moving vehicle. The penalties range between Sh500 as well as also also Sh10,000.
Mr Meja said the brand new digital driving licences – the size of a standard debit card – will improve road safety.
“When in place, the smart driving licence will enable the government to capture the driving history of all drivers as well as also also improve enforcement of traffic laws,” said Mr Meja.
The second generation driving licences are embedded which has a secure computer chip containing the holder’s information, which is actually only readable using special electronic gadgets, owned as well as also also managed by NTSA officials.
Mr Meja said the smart licence will help eliminate bribery as well as also also corruption from the transportation sector. The digital cards will come with preloaded points as well as also also every time a driver commits a traffic offence, points will be deducted.
“They will feature a point system where users will get points deducted for various traffic offences. Once they exhaust their point system, they will then have their driver’s licence confiscated for a period of time. The points will be about 20. Should they go down to below 15, the driver will be suspended via the road for a period of six months,” said Mr Meja.
NTSA, Mr Meja added, is actually pushing for amendments to the law to provide for a one-year jail term for those found using suspended drivers’ licences without the option of bail.
National Bank won the tender to develop the smart licences in 2015, defeating 22 companies’ bid to supply the second generation licences.
Kenya has over 5 million licensed drivers currently using paper-based driving licences which can be easily counterfeited.
Official statistics show which in 2015 the NTSA issued 91,336 driving licences, up via 88,666 issued in 2014.
The agency is actually planning to procure 6.5 million smart driving licences to be issued to motorists beginning next month. Under its Transport Integrated Management System (TIMS), NTSA has taken most of its services online including inspection booking, transfer of ownership, driver licence record search, driving licence issuance, driver licence renewal as well as also also application for road service licences.
Currently, motorists caught with traffic offences must face the courts, a process which is actually seen as time-consuming as well as also also encouraging the offenders to bribe the police in order to avoid the inconvenience.
Under the suspended instant fine rules, motorists in Nairobi who commit minor traffic offences such as talking on the phone while driving or exceeding speed limits were to pay instant fines of between Sh500 as well as also also Sh10,000.
The rules also barred the police via arresting motorists for minor offences or towing their vehicles to police stations.
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Motorists to pay traffic fines using smart licences