Senate President, David Mark
By Kunle Akogun
The controversy surrounding the new number plates and vehicle registration by the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) was Thursday put to rest as the Senate lifted its earlier order suspending the scheme and also reduced the chargeable fees by 30 per cent.
Following the adoption of the recommendations of its Committee on Federal Character and Inter-governmental Affairs, the Senate stipulated that the standard motor vehicle plate numbers would now cost N8, 400 instead of N15,000 while the fee for the procurement of new Driver’s License has been reduced from N6,000 to N4,000.
In the same vein, articulated vehicle owners will now pay N11, 200, instead of the N20,000 stipulated by the FRSC; while fees for privileged numbers and fancy or personalised numbers were left as originally recommended by the FRSC.
However, dealer number plates which cost N30, 000 before now was slashed to N16, 800. Consequently it lifted the suspension on the issuance of the plates and new drivers’ licenses, just as it barred the police from conducting another vehicle registration and stipulated that the deadline for compliance with the new scheme be extended from August 2012 to February 2013.
Chairman of the committee, Dahiru Awaisu Kuta, while presenting the report said: “The current suspension on the issuance of the new drivers’ licence and vehicle number plates now in its fourth month, resulting in a huge backlog of demands for these items by the motorists be lifted immediately, taking into account 30 per cent reduction.”
It therefore directed the police to “suspend the introduction of Bio-metric Central Motor Registry (BCMR) and the N3, 500 that goes with it as this is an additional burden and unnecessary duplication of the on-going scheme by the FRSC on the vehicle owner which is capable of translating into hike in transport fare for commuters.”