Illicit second-hand vehicles to be disposed of

02 September 2019 | Transport

Cabinet has approved the disposal of illicit vehicles that were destined for the Namibian market without proper customs clearance.

This will be done in accordance with Government Gazette number 3334 of December 2004, which prohibits the importation of motor vehicles older than five years into Namibia; and Gazette number 5293 of September 2013, which prohibits the importation into Namibia of second-hand motor vehicles older than eight years.

The ministry said vehicles which were not detained by the directorate due to shortage of storage facilities, but which were recorded and listed as vehicles diverted into Namibia, would also be disposed of.

The Directorate of Customs and Excise has since 2014 battled cases of in-transit vehicles being illegally diverted and registered with the Namibia Traffic Information System (Natis).

Currently, 763 vehicles have been recorded as illegally diverted in Namibia. These will be disposed of, should their owners fail to settle the customs and excise duties, while a further 132 vehicles were abandoned to the state at Walvis Bay Customs Office.

The finance ministry's PRO Tonateni Shidhudhu told Nampa the activities were triggered mostly by the introduction of the two government gazettes imposing restrictions on the importing of second-hand motor vehicles.

It was further discovered that the illicit vehicles were registered in the names of Namibian citizens with the assistance of Natis employees, foreign nationals and clearing agents, as well as customs officials.

Many of the transit vehicles that were declared at the port of Walvis Bay and destined for neighbouring countries such as Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo and Zimbabwe, did not exit Namibia to their countries of destination, while others were sold to Namibian citizens, Shidhudhu further said.