Mixed Reactions As Government Introduces Digital Number Plates

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A section of motorists has expressed mixed reactions over the government’s move to introduce digital number plates for both motorcycles and vehicles.

In a February 15, 2023, circular, Ramadhan Ggoobi, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Finance, Planning, and Economic Development and Secretary to the Treasury, said each motorist is expected to pay the sum of seven and thirty-five thousand (Shs735,000) for both vehicles and motorcycles.

This circular has sparked a countrywide mixed reaction, with some motorists questioning how the government arrived at the cost.

Mike Opio, a boda boda operator, expressed concern over what he termed an “exorbitant charge” by the government to acquire the digital plates.

“To have digitized number plates is not bad, but to charge someone with a motorcycle and someone with a big vehicle the same amounts when the two vary in price ranges was not fair and should be revised,” Opio argued.

According to Opio, the high cost of the new digital plates will be passed on to passengers, despite the fact that they already have a high operating cost.

Sandra Namusoke argued that charging someone with a vehicle worth Ugx 400 million the same amount as someone buying a motorcycle worth Ugx 2 million was unfair.

She suggests that at least the amount must be according to the value of the vehicle or motorcycle.

General Katumba Wamala, the minister for works and transport, encouraged motorists to embrace digital plates.

According to the Minister, vehicles or motorcycles belonging to diplomatic missions, UN agencies, the presidential motorcade, or any other special purpose vehicle will be exempt from the new plates as prescribed.

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