The Ugandan Ministry of Works and Transport has officially announced a groundbreaking initiative aimed at replacing the conventional, outdated license plates with innovative digital number plates. This forward-looking move signifies a significant leap in modernizing the country’s vehicle identification system.

The implementation of the Intelligent Transport Monitoring System will be carried out by /S Joint Stock Company Global Security, a Russian-based firm. The digital number plates will feature integrated Bluetooth chips for enhanced functionalities.

Digital Number Plates

During the official unveiling of the digital number plates on Wednesday, General Katumba Wamala, the Minister of Works and Transport, confirmed that the initial phase of deployment will focus on government vehicles. Subsequently, the plan is to extend this implementation to include motorbikes across the city of Kampala.

Official Rollout for Private Automobiles Set for February 1, 2024

The eagerly awaited launch of the digital number plates for private automobiles is scheduled to commence on February 1, 2024. This milestone marks a significant step forward in the nationwide implementation of the Intelligent Transport Monitoring System.

The deployment of these advanced digital number plates, equipped with Bluetooth chips, aims to revolutionize vehicle identification and monitoring. Under the direction of /S Joint Stock Company Global Security, a Russian company spearheading this initiative, the rollout for private automobiles is poised to bring forth a new era in transportation technology.

With an increased focus on improving efficiency and security, this implementation signifies a pivotal phase in the modernization of Uganda’s transport infrastructure. General Katumba Wamala, Minister of Works and Transport, emphasized the importance of this milestone during the initial announcement.

The gradual extension of this system to encompass private automobiles will ensure a comprehensive approach to vehicle monitoring, following the successful deployment of government vehicles and the subsequent inclusion of motorbikes in Kampala.

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The scheduled rollout of the digital number plates on February 1, 2024, not only signifies a transformative advancement in the transportation sector but also highlights the ongoing commitment to enhancing road safety, streamlining traffic management, and bolstering overall security measures in the region.

According to Gen. Katumba

“Direct advantages include those related to national security. Although our nation is well-liked and among the top travel destinations in the world, we still need to improve security, and this technology will help with safety and the management of crimes involving vehicles. Due to improved traceability, tracking, and reporting from the national police command center, the project will aid in preventing the theft of motor vehicles,”

Minister sees Intelligent Transport Monitoring System vital in fighting crime

According to TechTrendsAfrica: The Minister of Works and Transport expressed confidence that the implementation of the Intelligent Transport Monitoring System, coupled with digital number plates, will serve as a paramount solution in addressing criminal activities.

Additionally, he highlighted that Ugandan citizens purchasing these digital number plates will be provided with a complimentary tracking system installed in their vehicles. This added feature will enable effortless tracking in the unfortunate event of car theft, offering a practical means to enhance vehicle security and recovery.

  • “It will discourage reckless driving through constant monitoring through CCTV cameras and point-to-point communication by police officers. The system is also intended to instill discipline among motorists on the road but will also save the traffic police officers the burden of jumping on boda bodas to chase wrong doors but will rather communicate to colleagues and the wrongdoers are got.”

“The system will help us trace criminals who use vehicles or motorcycles to flee from crime scenes.”

He stated that the system will consolidate all information about Ugandans owning vehicles into a single database, facilitating more efficient tax collection. Furthermore, he emphasized the creation of job opportunities for individuals who will operate the system and be employed in the digital number plates factory located in Bugoloobi.

Nevertheless, General Katumba Wamala reassured the public, alleviating concerns about the potential surveillance of Ugandan citizens by the system.

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Assurances and Benefits of the Digital Number Plate System

He assured the public that there is no need for concern as the technology will not be misused. He clarified that the system will not disrupt regular nighttime activities, intervening only when criminal elements are detected.

Highlighting the significance of the unique code embedded in each digital number plate, he emphasized the system’s capacity to enhance the registration and identification of government vehicles across various ministries, departments, and agencies.

Addressing the challenge of distinguishing between different agency vehicles with identical blue number plates, he explained that the new system will allow for easy identification of vehicles associated with specific ministries like Agriculture, Energy, or other organizations.

According to Minister of Security Gen. Jim Muhwezi, the Russian corporation has provided training to police personnel for the installation of trackers in vehicles. The company has self-funded this initiative, expecting to recoup its investment within a ten-year period.

Presidential Anti-Crime Strategy Post-Assassinations

In the wake of several high-profile assassinations, including those of AIGP Andrew Felix Kaweesi, Joan Kagezi, Col. Ibrahim Abiriga, Muhammad Kirumira, and Maj. Muhammad Kiggundu, President Museveni in 2018 outlined a comprehensive 10-point strategy aimed at addressing the increasing trend of violent crimes within the nation.

“We will mandate that all drivers and motorcycle riders have electronic license plates with electronic signals; this will be at the expense of each owner. In the 2018 State of the Nation speech, Museveni stated, “This will allow us to know which vehicle or piki piki (motorcycle) was in a particular area when a crime was committed.”

“We require new helmets with back and front lit numbers. These helmets will be registered and added to the police department’s central processing systems.”

The proposal suggests that every car and motorcycle will be mandated to have a digital number plate embedded with a chip. This measure aims to enable law enforcement to swiftly track down vehicles to the precise location where a crime occurred.

The President asserted that the installation of CCTV cameras and the subsequent review of recorded footage would facilitate the seamless execution of this strategy.

FAQs

What is the latest number plate in Uganda in 2023?

On Wednesday, the government formally introduced the Intelligent Transport Monitoring System (ITMS) project, which involves equipping Ugandan vehicles with electronic number plates, also known as digital number plates.

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What is the newest number plate?

The highly anticipated car registration plates for September 2023 are now officially available starting from Friday, September 1st. These plates will be seen on all new cars, and starting from this date, all new vehicles will bear the “73” plate.

What color are the Uganda license plates?

The front plates feature characters embossed in black against a reflective white background, while the rear plates display black characters on a yellow background. Both the front and rear plates accommodate a maximum of seven characters.

How much is the number plate in Uganda?

Important Information: Individuals purchasing new vehicles or motorcycles will incur a fee of Shs714,000. Exchanging existing plates will cost Shs150,000 for motor vehicles and Shs50,000 for motorcycles.

What does a blue number plate mean in Uganda?

Blue number plates are designated for government organizations established by the statutes of Parliament, such as the Bank of Uganda and the Uganda Revenue Authority. The deep green number plates are exclusively reserved for military vehicles, while personalized number plates feature a light green hue. Diplomatic vehicles are easily identifiable by their blue and white background.

How much does a private number plate cost in Uganda?

To acquire a personalized number plate, an individual must pay an additional fee of Shs6m on top of the import duty and registration costs. Initially, during the inception of these number plates, their cost began at Shs3m, then increased to Shs5m, and currently stands at Shs6m

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