Several driving test centres in the Eastern Cape reopened for business on Monday, but with limited capacity.
Transport spokesperson Khuselwa Rantjie said 18 driver’s licence and testing centres as well as 37 registering authorities opened their doors to the public following their closure at the beginning of the national coronavirus lockdown.
Rantjie said this followed an announcement by transport minister Fikile Mbalula in May that centres of service delivery should resume work under level three of the lockdown, albeit under strict regulations.
“The Eastern Cape department of transport has in the past weeks inspected driving and testing centres in 22 municipalities including the two metros as well as 41 registering authorities.
“Only 18 centres and 37 Post Offices have been certified ready to resume with the service.
“The other centres will be reassessed later in the month and resume services thereafter,” she said.
In Nelson Mandela Bay, the Uitenhage centre remained closed.
Rantjie said opening of the centres was subject to compliance with the latest Covid-19 regulations such as sanitising of the office, hygiene control being in place and management of social distancing.
She said staff and all visitors would be required to wear a face mask when visiting any of the offices.
Transport, safety and liaison MEC, Weziwe Tikana-Gxothiwe visited the provincial office in Wilsonia at the weekend and said she was comfortable with the measures put in place.
“Communities must understand that to maintain social distancing we will be serving lesser numbers than usual.
“Normally Wilsonia will have 16 candidates siting for a learner’s licence test but the number will be reduced to eight at a time,” Tikana-Gxothiwe said.
Communities have 90 days from June 1 to renew learner’s, driver’s, temporary driving and motor vehicle licences as well as temporary permits, roadworthy certificates and professional driving permits (PDP) that expired from March 26-May 31.
Motor trader licences that expired during the same period are deemed valid and have been extended for a further grace period of six months from May 20.
“We therefore plead for your patience, where possible, especially with learner or driver’s licence tests.
“The centres will communicate the new dates with the individuals,” Tikana said.
In terms of driver’s licence tests, priority will be given to holders whose learner’s licences expired during the lockdown and those who will expire in the next three months.
RAs will be renewing all licence discs to cover backlogs and also deal with new registrations.