Court Cases Delay Roll-out of Smart Number Plates in Kenya

Number plates

The NTSA is a body charged with the mandate of managing the transport sub-sector in Kenya while at the same time ensuring a reduction in the number of lives lost due to road carnage. The body has been keen on inculcating technology in its activities in a bid to improve efficiency.  In 2014, the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA)  announced plans to introduce new generation high-tech number plates. The number plates will come pre-installed with microchips allowing for better management of the transport sector.

The smart number plates will store among other information the car’s chassis number, the vehicle’s make, type, colour, engine, transmission, date and place of manufacture; insurance validity, owner’s. The project was to be launched in collaboration with Huawei and local firm Copy Cat under the Transport Integrated Management System (Tims). The launch of the number plates constantly delayed owing to court cases. The initial launch was slated to take place in June but a case which was later settled out of court led to postponing to July. Another court case was however brought leading to another delay in the matter.

According to Business Daily, the subject matter of these delays has been contractors involved in the project. The paper says that the current stand-off begun after a local firm was awarded a contract to supply hot stamping foils and blank number plates. Hot stamping foils are thin metallic coats placed the blank number plates.The local firm Tropical Technologies was awarded the contract despite two other firms having been previously awarded the tender.The two other firms later sued the  Public Procurement Administrative and Review Board (PPARB) seeking a reversal of the decision. The court has since ordered the process be redone afresh.

The number plates for motor vehicles will sell at Kshs 3,700 while those of motorcycles will be sold for Kshs 1,500.