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Department of Road Traffic delays irk motorists

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There was chaos at the Department of Road Traffic and Safety Services at Ginnery Corner in Blantyre on Tuesday and yesterday as hundreds of motorists descended at the offices to renew their traffic documents.

This is despite the Department opening another office at Makata industrial area in the district.

The Daily Times saw long queues as motorists angrily waited to process their documents. Some motorists we spoke to said they had arrived at the offices as early as 8 am but as of 2 pm, they were yet to be assisted.

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“This is not on. This is torture. Please tell the authorities the system is not working,” said one of the motorists who identified himself as Arnold Banda.

Extremely long queues were also spotted at NBS Bank agency within the RTD compound where the motorists are supposed to make payments for their documents.

Countrywide Car Hire Managing Director, Mike Mlombwa, who was among the frustrated motorists, expressed deep concern over the delays.

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Mlombwa, who is also Indigenous Businesses Association of Malawi (Ibam) president, wondered how a country could develop when most of its active citizens are spending hours on a queue trying to process a simple document.

“This is the fourth time I am coming here and it appears we have a crisis. Honestly, things are not working. Talking to officials here, it appears the problem is coming about because the system is being controlled from South Africa.

“So my concern is, for many years now, we have been training our own IT gurus. Does it mean that we can’t run our own system? For how long shall we rely on people elsewhere to control our issues,” said Mlombwa.

Mlombwa argued that time had come for Malawians to take control of their own issues, adding that 51 years after independence, the country must have developed enough expertise to take control of various situations.

Efforts to talk to RTD officials proved futile as the bosses were said to be in a meeting.

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