New number plates to foil theft

Sowetan Reporter

Sowetan Reporter

There are moves afoot to change the format and type of motor vehicle registration plates presently in use.

The Mpumalanga department of roads and transport will embark on a consultative process in an effort to regulate the manufacture and distribution of number plates.

Authorities say this is necessary because the current plates are open to abuse by criminals given that they contain only minor security features and are easy to copy, which makes it difficult to control embossers.

Among other advantages will be the central system of accreditation of suppliers, reducing the possibility of cloning vehicles and improving easy detection by law enforcement agencies.

"The new number plates will also have self-destruct features when forcefully removed," said MEC for roads and transport, Jackson Mthembu.

The proposed number plates will integrate all existing regulations and there will be additional, improved security features.

He said different colours for different categories of motor vehicle have been mooted to assist identification.

Government vehicle plates will be differently colour coded from private and public transport vehicles.

Also under consideration will be the introduction and display of a third number plate not easy to remove and reuse.

Cabinet had endorsed the decision for publication of a notice to seek public comment on a proposed new number plate system for the province.