Photo: AdobeStock

Further delays expected in issuing of drivers and learners licences

Damage to infrastructure and outdated software has hampered progress at driving centres around South Africa.


Photo: AdobeStock

The issuing of drivers and learners licences will experience further delays, Alderman JP Smith and MEC for transport, Donald Grant, said on Monday.

This, according to Grant and Smith, is due to ongoing problems at the Driving Licence Card Account (DCLA) in Pretoria.

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What is causing drivers and learners licences delays?

Recent protests at DCLA

In July 2018, DCLA workers went on strike for a period of four months, allegedly damaging “the interface between the card production facility and the National Traffic information system (NaTIS)”.

“Members of the public waiting for their driving licence cards are likely to experience more delays in the issuing of these documents as the situation at the Driving Licence Card Account (DLCA) in Pretoria has yet to see any significant improvement.

“While the processing of applications for new licence cards and renewals is decentralised, all cards are issued by the DLCA, a trading entity of the National Department of Transport. This delay will therefore affect applicants all over South Africa,” Smith and Grant wrote in a statement.

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Outdated LEU software

The defective software of the live enrolment units (LEUs), Smith and Grant said, is another major factor in the delay.

These machines, which is used to perform and capture eye test data for drivers and learners licence applications and renewals, is hampered by software issues.

“The LEUs which are in use countrywide are in serious need of software upgrades and often have to be rebooted several times a day. The technical assistance required from the DLCA is lacking and further compounds the problem.

“Without eye tests, licence and card applications cannot be completed. Applicants are also not allowed to provide letters from optometrists in lieu of the eye test,” the two MECs added.

How to track drivers and learners licence application

While the City of Cape Town’s department of transport and public works strides on to find a solution to the problem, applicants have been advised to keep track of their applications.

Applicants can SMS their ID number to 33214 and based on the current status of the application, people can expect to receive any of the four responses:

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Order not received & Unknown ID DLCA does not have an application for this ID number
Order received by CPF Dear [Initials],[Surname] – your order has been received and is awaiting production
Order in production Dear [Initials],[Surname] – your order is currently in production
Order produced  & posted Dear [Initials],[Surname] – your order cards has been produced. Kindly wait for collection SMS