Over 400,000 vehicles not paying licences

The country has over one million registered vehicles but only 600,000 are paying their licences. Government will soon roll out a Nation-wide blitz to impound all vehicles without registration plates, says a government official.

Motorists say the cost of registration plates is too high.
Motorists say the cost of registration plates is too high.

Transport and Infrastructure Development permanent secretary, Munesu Munodawafa, said the remainder of the vehicles were either dodging paying taxes or they were operating illegally.

“We have over one million registered cars but it`s surprising that according to records only 600,000 are paying licences. The rest are either written off or dodging paying what is due to government,” he said.

The permanent secretary said the number of vehicles moving around country`s roads without proper registration plates was shocking.

“How many cars have you seen moving around without registration plates? It’s shocking – but we have threatened to impound or ban such vehicles,” said Munodawafa.

Since the announcement was made about impounding or banning the vehicles recently, 1,900 owners have come forward to register their cars with Central Vehicle Registry (CVR). Munodawafa said the ministry was expecting its revenue base to increase soon after the completion of the computerisation exercise at the end of October this year.

“By October, we will be able to know who owns a car and who is not paying,” said Munodawafa. “The law is clear if you don’t pay for two years, the vehicle is deregistered.”

However, motorists interviewed by The Zimbabwean said the cost of registration plates was too exorbitant -considering that they would have paid customs duty at the point of entry.

Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) charges close to $200 for registration plates.

“The money is too much. It must be revised downwards because we incur costs to import the vehicles and them we have to pay too much for the plates. We can`t afford it – considering that these vehicles are second hand and they need major service soon after they are imported,” said Chris Muranda,33, of Chakohwa in Marange who was driving a Nissan March without registration plates.

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