Wednesday, August 5, 2020

The endless agony of aspiring motor vehicle drivers

Whereas it was meant to facilitate processing of driver’s licences and motor vehicle registration applications, the implementation of a countrywide computer network to share information by Department of Transport and Road Safety centres (DTRS) has been a complete shame.

It could take months to have a driver’s licence issued. The network that handles accessing of testing centre information never functions without collapsing for a few hours. It has become a daily occurrence that when someone goes to seek a service at DTRS processing centres he/she is greeted by massive queues waiting for a down computer system to resume. It is probable that waiting times are no less than 3 hours each day. From my own observations, the probability of not being helped when visiting a DTRS centre because of a down system is more than 75 percent.

What compounds the situation is that by the time you finally find the system working, after several, costly visits to various DTRS centres, you will be told that there are no available spots to book for test-taking; so more costly visits to make.

From the many possible causes of such a problems, it appears that the network bandwidth capacity, which is the ability of a connection between remote networks to handle large amount of data, is severely limited, or the hardware configuration is just not right to handle such huge amount of data packets.

If this is a money issue, why cannot transport go public and let us know that it has got no sufficient resources to fund a more robust, reliable and capable computer network?

While there is no system, product or service in the world without potential for errors and malfunctions, the data handling network for DTRS has a serious fault and DTRS is neither willing to neither solve it nor disclose the problem to the public.?We wonder what the department of transport is doing about this counterproductive, disturbing and endless problem which hampers efficiency.

The brunt of this useless system is simply being felt by people who intend to have that opportunity to legally drive a motor vehicle in Botswana.

People’s lives, particularly of young people are being held hostage because they are scared of driving illegally. Why is it such a difficult task to get a driver’s license?

I want to warn you that if you have never bothered acquiring a licence to drive a motor vehicle, by the time you decide to do so you will be confronted by a steep mountain right in front of you to climb!

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Sunday Standard August 2 – 8

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of August 2 - 8, 2020.