Long wait at licence centre

Karen Nikiforos, City Bowl

Over three hours of my day have been spent sitting…waiting at Gallow Hill ‘tragic department’…surrounded in extremely close proximity with my fellow citizens – striving to maintain and obey the City’s system, but yet forced to suffer and break rules just by being here – lunch hour becomes hours.

Upon arrival, after the outdated website and notice form assured me all I needed was payment, ID, renewal letter… I’m told proof of residence is needed.

No, website says nothing about that. “We’ve been doing this since 2015” I was told. Then update your system.

Now, as I’m surrounded by anxious workers, labourers, mothers with screaming children, again we hear “We are offline” and again, the last two tellers disappear…. never giving an explanation, speed or service.

“Go to tellers 10 to 14 for payment” I was told two hours ago.

Stuck between a rock and a hard place – do I leave and begin this hellish journey again tomorrow – or sit here beside my fellow citizens, suffering under the incompetence of empty booths and “down systems”.

Hope someone can explain to all the employers why their workers are late… why my kids are standing in the playground wondering where their mother is. It’s okay… I’m sure they will understand… “Their systems are down”.

The City’s executive director for safety and security, Richard Bosman, responds: The City of Cape Town’s Driving Licence Testing Centres (DLTCs) are always looking to improve the customer experience and we apologise for any inconvenience that clients have been experiencing of late.

Unfortunately, there have been a number of issues that have impacted on service delivery – many of which the City has no control over.

We recently installed a new queue management system at Gallows Hill which caused some disruption, but this has now been resolved.

Apart from this, operations at DLTCs across the country are being hamstrung by problems with the E-Natis system and the machines used to conduct eye tests. Our staff can only work as fast as the machines/systems allow and it is indeed a source of great frustration.

The City is doing everything possible to assist clients as quickly as possible but, in terms of addressing the overall problem, our hands are tied as the E-Natis system resides with the Department of Transport.

We apologise to our clients and would like to assure the public that we are trying to engage with the relevant authorities to resolve these issues.