Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula on 1 July 2021 announced a phased-in approach to the roll-out of AARTO.
Minister Mbalula says there are four phases to the AARTO roll-out:
- Phase 1 will run from today until 30 September 2021 during which seven AARTO service outlets will be established nationally, the eNATIS will be enabled to collect AARTO payments, and will include a communications campaign to educate motorists on AARTO;
- Phase 2 will run from 1 October to 31 December 2021 during which 67 local metropolitan authorities will ‘come online’ for AARTO processing, the adjudication process and Appeals Tribunal will start functioning, 18 more AARTO service outlets will be established;
- Phase 3 will commence on 1 January 2022 and run until 30 June 2022 during which 144 municipal areas will be added to the AARTO system, and;
- Phase 4 which will begin 1 July 2022 and which will see the introduction of the Points Demerit System as well as the rehabilitation programme for repeat offenders which serves as the backbone of AARTO.
The planned implementation of AARTO will thus not happen on 1 July 2021 as previously communicated. The Minister noted several reasons for this including the suspension of senior managers at the RTIA for maladministration and the impact of COVID-19.
The Automobile Association (AA) welcomed the announcement saying that it is glad that government has heeded calls to clarify issues relating to the implementation of the AARTO but says no real roll-out of the system can occur until the system’s regulations are promulgated. The AA added that this process may delay the final implementation of the system scheduled for July 2022.