New Features To Be Placed On A Drivers Licence

“Right now, people are walking up and down with bogus driver’s licences, and it is hard to distinguish between the bogus and the real. For example, a gentleman turned up in Spanish Town and was asked for his driver’s licence and he produced a driver’s licence in the name of a very colourful Senior Superintendent of Police – the full name,” the Minister noted. The Ministry of Transport and Mining will be introducing new security features on a driver’s licence to eliminate fraud. Speaking in the House of Representatives recently, Portfolio Minister, Hon. Robert Montague, said the new security features will be facilitated under the regulations of the new Road Traffic Act. The Ministry of Transport and Mining will be introducing new security features on a driver’s licence to eliminate fraud.Speaking in the House of Representatives recently, Portfolio Minister, Hon. Robert Montague, said the new security features will be facilitated under the regulations of the new Road Traffic Act.“Right now, people are walking up and down with bogus driver’s licences, and it is hard to distinguish between the bogus and the real. For example, a gentleman turned up in Spanish Town and was asked for his driver’s licence and he produced a driver’s licence in the name of a very colourful Senior Superintendent of Police – the full name,” the Minister noted.Mr. Montague pointed out that the new regulations under the Road Traffic Act will also allow for digitalised tests and periodic retesting.“Right now, you go into an examination depot and do the test, a clerk takes it, corrects it and tells you if you pass or fail. You don’t get a chance to see the document itself. What we are moving to do is digitise it. Once you are onscreen and online, as soon as you pass it will be centralised, so that no local person in a depot would be able to change the scores or interfere with it…; it will be centrally dealt with,” he said.Mr. Montague said the regulations under the Act are being finalised. “Although this process is long and people have been waiting, it is the normal legislative process that we have to pay attention to, so that we don’t keep coming here to amend what we have just passed,” he said.He encouraged Jamaicans to exercise patience “while we get it right”.In the meantime Mr. Montague said aspects of the Road Traffic Act have been gazetted and are enforced, including those that establish the Island Traffic Authority as the lead implementing agency.“However, some sections in the old Act, once they are taken off the books, all the sections will go and that would affect the Transport Authority Act, so we are moving now as part of the process to move the sections that relate to the Transport Authority,” he said.The new Road Traffic Bill establishes new offences, as well as provide increased penalties for breaches. Story Highlights read more

Young people must not continue to be neglected says UN rural development

Young people account for half the population in many of the world’s poorest countries, particularly in Africa, yet the meeting’s panelists in Wednesday’s round-table discussion said that they have been neglected as a social category in poverty reduction schemes. Some experts pointed to the urban bias in development policies of the past 30 years that have prevented rural areas from prospering from market economies due to lack of infrastructure and investment. Often for youth in poor rural areas, where employment options are limited, their transition into adulthood is accelerated, thus making it imperative to meet their educational, health and skills training needs. Education and training, especially in agriculture, is particularly key, and rural youth are impeded by a lack of access as well as low-quality schooling. In a separate IFAD meeting today, experts called for enhanced measures for poor rural farmers to allow them to access “value chains,” or activities such as processing and marketing that bring goods from production to consumption, and allow them to better compete against powerful large retailers. Without such actions, efforts to reduce poverty could be undermined. Such initiatives have taken place successfully in countries such as Colombia, where farmers themselves realized that without innovation and new markets for their products, they would not be able to survive. “They went from being passive actors to active actors who also recognized that their own change would affect a whole chain of actors,” said Maria Oliva Lizarazo, Director of the IFAD-backed Rural Microenterprise Development Programme. 15 February 2007New development programmes are necessary to minimize the growing youth crisis, often ignored by policymakers, in the world’s poorest countries, experts said at a meeting of the United Nations International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD) held in Rome. read more