Some motorists in the country are using special number plates that are not registered by the Directorate of Road Traffic and Safety Services (DRTSS), a development the directorate says endangers lives of not only road users but society at large.
The Daily Times has observed that some Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) supporters are expressing their political support for President Peter Mutharika (APM) on motor vehicle registration number plates with Adadi 1, APM 2019 BOMA and APM 1 as some of the most regular messages.
The Daily Times has
also observed that other people put DPP scarves around their rearview mirrors.
But DRTSS Director, Fergus Gondwe, said the practice is against the Road Traffic Act, warning that culprits will face the law.
“A number plate does not come as a flower. Number plates identify the vehicle and the owner through a registration process. A vehicle without a number plate is a danger to society because it can easily be used in criminal activities and you cannot trace it in the system. Obscuring a number plate is also a crime; likewise, using a number which was not provided following laid-down procedures. Anyone using such a vehicle will be taken to court,” he said.
Gondwe said registration of a car and the provision of number plates is done using a robust procedure so that the details of the vehicle and the owner tally with the number plate issued.
“For a vehicle to have a number plate, there are processes that are followed. The directorate assigns the number and the person buys it. Anything that does not follow this process is not even a number plate,” he said.
Asked why such vehicles continue plying the roads of Malawi in full view of both the directorate’s officers and police, Gondwe said, sometimes, their officers miss such vehicles since the country has too many roads.
“We should not blame the police only because we are also there on the streets. This is a collective responsibility but, you see, there are too many roads against too few officers, so we miss them but it remains a crime and those people will face the law,” Gondwe said.
National Police spokesperson, James Kadadzera, could not be reached to explain why law enforcers let vehicles bearing such number plates operate freely on the roads of Malawi.
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