Memorandum of Understanding signed between KZN Transport and Driving School operators
The KZN Department of Transport held a meeting with Driving School Operators at the McDonald Theatre, Inkosi Mhlabunzima Maphumulo House last week Friday. The aim of the meeting was to hand over a signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and the Driving Schools Policy that will be used to regulate the industry, thereby producing safer drivers who will contribute to the reduction of road carnages.
The signing of the MoU and the formulation of the Driving Schools Policy comes after there were concerns that the industry was not looked after, not standardised and had no regulation policy.
The Provincial Government and the Driving Schools Industry deemed it appropriate to implement interim measures to regulate the industry, pending the declaration of the National Road Traffic Amendment Bill. In 2011, the former MEC for Transport, now Premier, Willies Mchunu convened a Road Safety Summit which resolved to regulate and standardize the driving schools industry. The MoU was signed by the Head of Department Sbusiso Gumbi and has been handed over to all registered driving school operators that have provisional operators certificate throughout the province.
Over 500 driving schools have been registered with the department so far. After numerous meetings with relevant stakeholders, it was then decided that there should be an office within the department that will look after the needs of the operators.
The Driving Schools Policy will allow the driving schools to be graded according to the services they offer. Those that provide Learners Licence Lessons will be graded as L, while those providing the Driving lessons will be graded as D. Under this policy, the department is committed to registering all driving schools and instructors in the province.
So far, the department has trained a total of 292 instructors since October 2018. After the implementation of this policy, a task team will also be formed to investigate office compliance, documentation compliance, and vehicle compliance.
Nondumiso Zulu from the Zulu Driving School in Greytown says they hope that this policy will pay more attention to the needs of the driving school operators. “The policy seems to come with good plans, but as operators from Greytown we are still concerned with the fact that we still do not have a testing station. We hope this policy will bring change within the industry,” says Zulu.