Vehicle licence disc renewals – reminders not arriving

JOHANNESBURG – For a significant period of time now, by many vehicle owners have been complaining that vehicle licence renewal reminders have not been received. While the apparent failure may be attributable to the inefficiencies of the South African Post Office, the RTMC or eNaTIS, the City of Cape Town claimed yesterday (27 January 2016) that this is attributable to National Agencies failing to send reminders to vehicle owners.

While the RTMC Act does not place a duty on it to send out licence renewal reminders, it has done so since its formation and the R36.00 transaction fee on eNaTIS transactions is paid to the RTMC. It is not clear whether the specific point of failure is attributable to the SA Post Office, the RTMC or eNaTIS itself, but whatever the reason behind it is, vehicle owners are advised to check their licence discs regularly.

Motorists are reminded that checking the validity of their licence disc on their vehicle is part of the pre-trip inspection which should be performed before driving, not just at the K53 driving licence test.

Should a licence disc be due for renewal and the owner not have received a reminder to renew it, a form ALV will have to be completed.

It is also important to note that counter staff of the SA Post Office are particularly fond of telling people that a warrant of arrest has been issued when people try unsuccessfully to renew their licence discs. While this may be true in the City of Cape Town where administrative blocks are placed on eNaTIS by it on the basis of the existence of a warrant of arrest, it is most likely untrue in other parts of the country.

By far, the most likely cause of a licence disc not being issued is the existence of an enforcement order issued under the AARTO Act. In October 2015, JPSA published an advisory on this matter, yet it still receives numerous enquiries from panicked members of the public who are misled and unduly intimidated by alarmist statements by SAPO counter staff. Motorists are also advised that enforcement orders block the renewal of driving licenses and Professional Driving Permits (PrDP) as well as licence discs.

Despite the National Department of Transport having published in a government gazette 38142 on 31 October 2014 that motorists may make use of an online facility on its website to verify and update their address details the eNaTIS system, no such facility apparently exists on its or the RTMC’s websites. According to the City of Cape Town, such a vehicle licensing facility does exist on its own website however this would only be applicable to Cape Town and not to any other part of the country.