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I will solve Uganda’s problem of driving permits

By Vision Reporter

Added 14th March 2005 03:00 AM

I have followed all articles about driving permits in Uganda with keen interest. The challenge in making a national driving permit is to plan a suitable production process for the entire country.

I have followed all articles about driving permits in Uganda with keen interest. The challenge in making a national driving permit is to plan a suitable production process for the entire country.

By Niels Carl Moller

I have followed all articles about driving permits in Uganda with keen interest. The challenge in making a national driving permit is to plan a suitable production process for the entire country.

The strategy should ensure that all Ugandans from all parts of the country easily access the driving permits. It is logistics and nothing else that limits Uganda’s capacity to making driving permits.

It takes only a card-printing machine to make tamper-proof driving permits. Most developed countries have since started using plastic driving permits. This leaves Uganda’s question of driving permits unique to her tendering process, which can only be referred to as an investment joke.

The process, which was to take one month, started in 1999. It was not until one-and-half years later that the ministry of finance handed down the evaluation report. Out of the 25 companies, 12 were invited to submit their final bids.

On opening the bids (TR85/191) in 2000, only four companies had submitted their tenders.

From a pure business standpoint, the reason must have been due to the nature of the proposed contract, which was planned to be self-financed. The awarded contractor would have to share in the revenue collected from the permits with the ministry of finance. It is here that lies the problem! Sharing with the Government is not better than committing business suicide. The officials signing for the business on contractors’ part of the estimated revenue would go underground almost immediately. After an agreed length of time, the contractor would have to hand over his equipment to the Government as part of the deal, all in all a scheme that is doomed to fail, before it even starts.

Even as we edge into the quarter of 2005, Uganda does not have computerised driving permits yet.

Face Technologies, eventual winners of the contract are in the thick struggle to implement the contract. They have probably pumped tons of dollars into the project already.

However, it was not entirely out of option for the Government to produce their own driving permits.

This would have saved the country millions of dollars. The government should take control of driving permit revenue and not share it with a foreign company, who would only want to maximise gains.

All the Government needs is to hire an expatriate specialist at a limited cost, over a limited time, to train local staff and build a good driving permit solution for Uganda.

This might take four months and I am willing to do it at no charge. All profits will be retained in Uganda and all jobs maintained in Uganda.

The writer is an international
business consultant

I will solve Uganda’s problem of driving permits

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