KAMPALA, UGANDA: President Museveni has signed into law the Traffic and Road Safety Amendment Bill 2023 with an increased fine of Shs 2 million from Shs200,000 for motorists found guilty of overspeeding.
The new law which the government says is aimed at enforcing sanity on Ugandan roads will see offenders caught driving past the prescribed speed limit serve a jail sentence of up to three years or both.
According to the law, motorists who agree to pay the fine as issued through the Express Penalty Scheme (EPS) will pay Shs200,000, but the penalty is higher (Shs2m) for those who oppose the fine and opt for courts and are found guilty.
“a person who fails to comply with the speed limit commits an offence and is liable, on conviction, to a fine not exceeding 100 currency points (shs2,000,0000) or imprisonment not exceeding three years, or both,” reads section 119A(3) of the new law.
The speed limit in Uganda depends on the area and the type of car one is driving. For instance, on highways; motorcycles and saloon cars are not supposed to run beyond 100km per hour on paved roads and 80km per hour on gravel.
On the other side, vans, pick-ups and trucks carrying less than 3500kg are not supposed to exceed 80km per hour on paved roads and 60 km per hour on gravel roads.
Mini buses or taxis are not permitted to exceed 80km per hour on paved roads and 60km per hour on gravel roads whereas buses and coaches are not allowed to exceed 80km per hour on paved rural roads and 60km per hour on grave roads.
Other new bills signed
In addition to the Traffic and Road Safety (Amendment) (No.2) Act 2023, the President assented to five other bills recently passed by Parliament.
They include the Appropriation Act, 2023, the Value Added Tax (Amendment) Act, 2023(1/2), the Lotteries and Gaming (Amendment) Act, 2023, the Conventional on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters(Implementation) Act, 2023 and the Supplementary Appropriation Act, 2023.
The Lotteries and Gaming (Amendment) Bill 2023, for example, increases the tax rate on gaming activities from 20 to 30 per cent to generate more revenue for the government but will, on the other hand, have a significant impact on the gaming industry.
Another critical new bill is the Value Added Tax (Amendment) Bill 2023 on the other hand will see the introduction of new taxes on platforms like Netflix, Amazon, Twitter and Facebook among others as government targets more sources of revenue.
All the new laws become effective tomorrow, July, 1, 2023.