Addressing press last week, URA boss Allen Kagina revealed that all motor vehicle owners will have to re-register their information into a new system.
She said the new motor vehicle module, which became active on July 1, would ease registration, save time and avoid inconveniences.
Qn: What is this that URA is introducing regarding the registration of motor vehicles?
URA: It is a simple, easy and quick way to register, transfer and deregister vehicle from Uganda to another country.
It is part of our E-TAX system. It will also help our clients with getting a duplicate number plate in case the initial one is lost and making alterations to motor vehicle details.
Qn: When will it start?
Ura: It started on the 1st of July 2012.
Qn: How will it work?
URA: The registration will be in two categories namely one for vehicles that were registered earlier and are already being used and those that have just been imported into the country.
For those that are already in use, the owners, who must possess a 10-digit tax identification number, have to visit the URA website-ura.go.ug and access their account.
This will lead them to the motor vehicle registration form. They then have to input a vehicle’s details: registration number, chasis number, engine number, type of vehicle, model, year, fuel type, capacity etc.
All these are provided in the log book. Motorists also have to copy a serial at the back and front the registration plates.
On providing all the information, one has to click the submit icon. After this, the system generates a receipt to the client.
URA will compare if the information supplied matches with that in its systems. If all is okay, the old logbook will be withdrawn and a new one will be issued.
The vehicle owner will then get access to the full range of motor vehicle services on the internet and their mobile phones.
If there is no match, a motorist will be asked to take their car to the nearest URA office for verification. One new advantage of the system is that one can decide from which office they want to pick their logbook.
And for the imported cars, the process can be done by a clearing agent who starts the process by providing all information about a car.
The agents will have accounts on the website (ura.go.ug). These accounts will be used to register the car. And since the car will be at the border, customs officials will physically examine it to confirm the details that have been provided. It will be registered when a match is confirmed.
Qn: Why is it being introduced?
URA: It will dramatically reduce time on transactions regarding vehicles. Since everything is going to be done online, cases of files disappearing as seen in past will be nonexistent. Files are going to be secure. And systems will enable us make timely and quick decisions.
Additionally, a motorist will have peace of mind, knowing information regarding their vehicle is safe in URA system and as such cannot be tampered with.
Unlike in the past, the information will not be altered without the owner’s notice. The system has been configured to generate automatic e-mails to the owner whenever someone wants to illegally make changes regarding the vehicle.
Car owners will also know a vehicle’s details by merely checking the website. Intending buyers need not worry anymore because by just clicking a mouse, they will be able to confirm ownership.
This will save people the burden of buying cars that are stolen or those that have encumbrances. The pages on a person’s account will have an authentication link, which will enable you to view ownership.
Unlike in the past where tax payers had to come to URA offices to pick a form, go to a bank and come back, people will have to assess themselves for respective activities regarding their vehicles.
Because it is dependent on the internet, staff will follow what is going on and will accordingly offer the final service.
We are also optimistic that this will wipe out cases in which similar registration numbers were issued to various motorists.
Qn: How do to systems differ?
URA: It is about the way the way registration is done. Before, one had to travel to the URA offices to be attended to.
For example, if a person wanted to change a car’s ownership, they would come, get a form fill out and would be told how much they have to pay.
They would then go to the bank, pay and submit forms. An official would tell them to come back after a couple of days.
But in the new system, all one has to do is to go online to fill out a form, which will also advise how much is to be paid for a particular activity.
One has to come to URA only once just for verification. The process should end in one day (including issuance of a logbook) if all the procedures are adhered to.
Qn: What are the innovations in the new system?
URA: We are introducing a new log book. Whoever successfully registers their car will surrender the old one and get a new logbook.
Additionally, for any change regarding the car, one has to receive a new log book. For example, if a car changes ownership, the person purchasing it has to receive a new one. The same will apply to alterations like change of color.
Qn: How much will cost motorists to register their cars?
URA: For those seeking to move details of existing cars to the new system, it is free of charge. The log books are also free of charge.
All person has to do is to provide all information regarding their vehicle via the internet. However, there is a category of people, who bought cars and never transferred ownership.
That type will bring cars claiming they ownership URA while the URA records will have something different. Such people will first pay the transfer fees and thereafter before the cars are registered.
This will also apply to other alterations like changing color without notifying authorities (URA). For vehicles being imported into the country for the first time, the usual import and registration charges will apply.
Qn: What will happen to those who do not comply?
URA: Motorists will have an entire year running from July 1, 2012. If the year elapses before some people register their cars, the implication will be that their logbooks are invalid and as such cannot have any transaction regarding that car.
We do not want a situation whereby we are compelled to impound cars whose owners have failed to comply. Accordingly, we appeal to people to comply during the one year.