The government has completed the transfer of motor vehicle registration from the Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) to the Ministry of Works and Transport (MoWT). Effectively, the ministry will handle all registration activities and processes starting 1st July 2023.
According to URA, in a recent meeting between the Commissioner General of URA, John Musinguzi, and officials from the Ministry, it was revealed that the Ministry would be ready with its new Motor Vehicle Registration System (MVRS) at the beginning of the next financial year, hence the move.
The first phase of the transition, which involved post-registration services such as; change of ownership, alterations, de-registration, duplicate plates, and registration books, was successfully completed.
The move also aligns with the government’s implementation and operationalization of an Intelligent Transport Monitoring System (ITMS). This system requires the issuance of new digital plates to enable the tracking of vehicles and motorcycles to combat crime facilitated by the use of vehicles. The system is to be provided by Stock Company-Global Security.
The new registration system will also capture vehicles coming into the country before the declaration in the Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA).
Further more, MoWT will integrate the motor vehicle database URA has provided to various MDAs, including the Insurance Regulatory Authority, Uganda Police, and Uganda Registration Services Bureau.
To implement the system in the next financial year, MoWT issued regulations; requiring car owners to apply for replacing the old plates with digital plates with tracking devices, new number series for each vehicle category, and new number series for each vehicle category for each government agency.
URA has welcomed the move, with the spokesperson Ibrahim Bbossa saying that having all aspects of motor vehicle registration offered by one agency will improve service delivery to Ugandans. He also called it a testament to the success of a project that started three years ago with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding.
“It comes at a time when we are streamlining services as URA by leveraging technology to simplify processes and user experience, thereby offering better service delivery to our clients; for us, that is a win,” he said.
Car owners will be informed of the changes as part of URA’s taxpayer education programs before implementation, Bbossa added.
The government also signed a 10-year agreement with Joint Stock Company Global Security, a Russian firm, that will see the later install tracking devices in all public and private vehicles and motorcycles in the country.
The intelligent transport monitoring system will also see tracking devices installed in water vessels on all the country’s water bodies.
However, URA shall remain with the management of the revenue processes, thus continuing to collect the related Non-Tax Revenue from the MVRS.
According to URA, Uganda imports about 50,000 vehicles a year worth Ugx 650 billion in taxes.