Talk of the Town

Drivers licence machine broken


The 20-year-old machine that prints SA’s driver’s licences has broken down for a second time.

It broke down in November 2021 and was sent to Germany for repairs. German technician­s are now coming to SA to fix it.

Unusually long delays reported by licence applicants in Makana and Ndlambe prompted Talk of the Town to ask whether the licence printing machine had broken down again and this was confirmed by the Eastern Cape’s acting chief director: transport regulation­s, Xolisa Jakuja.

“It is confirmed that the machine is broken down, but it is expected that a technician from Germany will be attending to it this weekend [and that all will be] back to normal by Tuesday,” said Jakuja.

According to TimesLive, about one million people waiting to be issued with new or renewed driver’s licences were affected by the two-anda-half-months outage from November 7 2021 to January 26 2022, worsened by the Covid-19 lockdown.

Minster of transport Fikile Mbalula announced last month that the current driver’s licence card was to be replaced to comply with internatio­nal standards.

The current card and machine will be decommissi­oned on April 1 2024.

The current cards will be valid until March 31 2029.

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