LATEST: Cops speak on driver’s licences

Snr Asst Comm Charamba

Snr Asst Comm Charamba

Freeman Razemba Crime Reporter
TRAFFIC police on duty have a right to hold and check driver’s licences but do not have the right to withhold it, a senior officer has said. In an interview with The Herald today, Chief police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba said police had a right to verify the authenticity of a licence.

“The Zimbabwe Republic Police would like to correct the misconception by certain mischievous and errant drivers who refuse to give their licences for inspection by police officers on duty on the guise that police spokesperson said you should not hold or touch my licence, that is not correct,” she said.

She said anyone who failed to give police their particulars on request was violating the law.

Details to follow…

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  • Nyandoro Kunzwi

    But the issue ,is whether the cop should refuse to return my license in the event that I fail to raise the spot fine on the road? A motorist may not have the fine but can raise and pay later if has admitted the offence.That needs clarification please , please, please.

  • watch out

    watch out for these cop thieves! make certified copies and give them that only. keep your original drivers license in your hand if they want to check original against certified copy. DO NOT give them your original drivers license. KEEP it in your hands. Give them a certified copy, SHOW them both sides of your original drivers license, but keep your drivers license in your hands. they don’t need to see with their hands, they can see with their eyes! They have your particulars on the certified document, so you as a driver are giving them your particulars! DON’T give them or allow to hold/take your drivers license, please!!! Police, remember you don’t see with your grubby little hands, you see with your EYES! Or better yet, drivers leave your license at home and only travel with certified copies and you can give these certified copies to the corrupt cops at roadblocks!

    • Francis

      Take this advice and your breaking the law. Why do you talk with such authority when misleading people?

      • robertndaurayanyika

        ***. a certified copy is an authentic document futseki

        • Francis

          Then try boarding a plane or crossing the border with a certified copy of your passport, shasha. Hudofo here?

    • G Tichatonga

      It is people like you that create unnecessary problems. The world over you give the police your driver’s licence and they check whatever they need to check. This certified copies suggestion is simply not realistic. The issue is that the police should not blackmail drivers by refusing to give back the licence.

      • Fred Muchena

        what if they refuse, as is the norm?

  • punungwe

    The problem is police officers holding motorists to ransom by refusing to return their drivers licences before the drivers have paid bribes or cash fines.

    Motorists who refuse to hand over licences are wary of being extorted for money this way. This kind of extortion needs to be addressed.

    • Mosad

      batai munhu, anoramba ne rezinesi rako torawo hat worova pasi

  • G Tichatonga

    That by failing to produce a licence one would be violating some law is not exactly true. Which law is that? My understanding is that a driver is given a ticket to produce a licence and should s/he fail to do so then an offence would have been committed ….simply not having a licence on your person cannot be a crime. The generality of our people are law abiding and the police should not seek to antagonize them by being too overzealous and officious.

    • Sifiso Xolile Ndlovu Zgwanyanw

      Actually, it is an offense to drive a vehicle without a valid driver’s license on your person; the officer must write a ticket and the offender is given time to produce the valid driver’s license and to pay the fine. It is also an offense to drive with a learner’s license without a licensed driver present (with his/her driver’s license on them) and an L plate displayed.

  • nyatsimba

    “anyone who fails to give their particulars on request is violating the law”….incorrect stmt. its not mandatory to have with you your driver’s licence while driving.the law allows the driver seven days to present one’s licence to the police station.


    What do you mean by checking for authenticity? How are the police going to distinguish a fake and a real drivers licence when checking cz they all look the same. it only needs the CVR/VID to check in their database if its fake or real. THE POLICE ARE COMPLETELY LOSING IT.

  • NdiyoStandardiyi

    This is what the law says, why not just quote it as is kwete kungotaura basi….

    The Road Traffic Act [Chapter 13:11]
    Section 74 Power to demand licences and detain motor vehicles

    (1) A police officer or inspecting officer may require the driver of a motor vehicle—

    (a) to produce his licence to drive such motor vehicle; and
    (b) if his licence to drive such motor vehicle is a foreign drivers licence or an international driving permit referred to in subsection (1) of section eighteen, to produce any visitors entry certificate or other certificate or permit issued to him in terms of the Immigration Act [Chapter 4:02], or in terms of any enactment relating to refugees; or, failing production of such licence, to produce proof of his identity.

    (2) If, upon being required to do so by a police officer or inspecting officer in terms of subsection (1), a driver, having failed to produce his licence to drive the motor vehicle concerned, fails to produce proof of his identity, the police officer or inspecting officer may detain the motor vehicle for a period not exceeding twenty four hours.

    (3) A person who, on being required to do so in terms of subsection (1), fails to produce any licence, certificate or permit shall be guilty of an offence unless, within seven days thereafter, he—
    (a) produces at a police station the licence concerned and, if the licence is a foreign drivers licence or an international driving permit referred to in subsection (1) of section eighteen, any visitors entry certificate or other certificate or permit issued to him in terms of the Immigration Act [Chapter 4:02], or in terms of any enactment relating to refugees; and
    (b) explains to the police officer in charge of the police station referred to in paragraph (a) that he is producing the licence and any such certificate or permit in compliance with such requirement and names the place where, and the date when, such requirement was made.

    (3a) A person guilty of an offence in terms of subsection (3) shall be liable to a fine not exceeding level five or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months or to both such fine and such imprisonment

    (4) The police officer referred to in paragraph (b) of subsection (3) shall forthwith, on the production of the licence and any certificate or permit concerned—

    (a) notify the police in the area or district where the requirement concerned was made that such requirement has been complied with; and
    (b) issue to the person producing such licence and any such certificate or permit a receipt in such form and containing such particulars as may be prescribed.

    (5) In any prosecution for an offence in terms of subsection (3) it shall be presumed, unless the contrary is proved, that the accused did not produce his licence or any certificate or permit referred to in that subsection at a police station in accordance with that subsection.

    (6) Any member or class of member of the Public Service designated by the Minister by statutory instrument shall have the powers conferred on an inspecting officer by this section.

  • wembabvu

    Mai Charamba, I think with the prevailing situation you have seen the officers you send on bogus roadblocks returning with few dollars and you have decided to give them the power to hold onto motorists licences, thus forcing motorists to pay the dubious fines for them to be able to get back their licences. My advice to motorists is “Give them certified copies of licences with Asst commissioner Charamba.s signature”

  • Dungagun

    Police officer are vry rude they refuse to return drivers license so that the driver may not run away but my question is if a motorist may not have the spot fine and has admitted the offense what do we do pliz we need clarity on this ??????????????????

  • fury


  • XposiaMania

    ZRP are vocal when they view that their ways of swindling cash out of the public is on the spot light and will be difficult for them to put motorists into submission. ZRP organisation is a house of corruption. Officers are very rude to motorists. Police Officers are enforcers of law and not Law. So what the Police suggest is not law. So a police officer must not vitiate a motorist rights on the road because he is an authorized driver by possessing a driver’s licence and paying ZINARA vehicle levies. Truly Police activities must be spelt out expressly for public interest and critical scrutiny.



  • Collin

    To inspect the validity of the licence and/or the holder itself is NOT a problem madam. But the officers later tend to further withhold it until you have paid a fine for whatever offence committed. We do not travel with extra cash to pay fines on the road because we do not expect to commit offences intentionally. So if i do not have enough cash to pay for an offence, what do i do because i cannot leave my licence with the officer at the same time & also do not want to waste my time going to the police station for some minor offences?

  • Mabaleka

    Don’t give police your license disk. Its yours in any case. Give them a copy if possible. tell them you left it at home or office… If they want to charge you with not carrying your license, when they start writing the ticket, tell them you need to check again in your car and then show it to them. It always works for me… you need to be ahead of these “criminals”… hahahaha

  • JB

    The Cop who operates at Christmas pass refused with my license until I paid $20 for having a spare tyre of a small Japanese made type. Size of the small tyre is R14, tyres on my car are R14. Please can you explain why you are refusing the small tyre. I refused to pay the $20 and the charge was reduced to $10. I have the ticket with me and prepared to produce it anytime. The police are stealing from us.

  • Teescope

    Amai deal with your errant policeman first. They don’t take ones license for the things you are talking about. They confiscate the license to make one pay a spot fine. I have happily shown my honestly begotten license only to have the policeman walk around my car several times almost fining me for putting on hazards when I was approaching the road block. When I told him as a driver with defensive driving I could see the bus behind me was approaching at a high speed and was warning the driver, he back tracked. I showed him my defensive driving certificate and he quickly handed me my license and wished me a good day after wasting a good fifteen minutes. NXXA

  • Kuta Kinte

    I do not see any problem in me giving the police my license for them to check on whatever they will be checking and then giving it back to me, as advised. Only those who did not receive their licenses through the normal VID processes can be uncomfortable with that. We should not always be confrontational with our police because the next time you will desperately need them. The idea that some police officers are corrupt should not make us forget that our laws have to be adhered to.

  • Fred Muchena

    I always display my licence on the driver window when asked for it, window and door locked.

  • mabwe

    Dear Mr. Editor: Please pass this message to Charamba or Chihuri.
    Can the police chief comment and tell the public exactly the hallmarks of a genuine roadblock. Considering the recent fake roadblock incident in Kuwadzana can the police tell us exactly what the public needs to check for to distinguish a genuine roadblock from a fake roadblock e.g. shouldn’t the police office on roadblocks have their force numbers (or even names) printed on their shirts???
    Thank you

    • Englebert

      The truth of the matter is Zim corps are corrupt that is why we don’t give them licences. Once you give them they put you under illegal detention so that they can milk your cash. Guys lets go the certified copy way as this is an authentic document. In fact, do your copies guys and have them certified by ZRP, then it will be interesting to see who will refuse to accept the copy on the road block. We are not rebellious citizens but these are coping strategies to the rampant corruption around.

  • Zvichapera

    Oh! my God, I did not know that the Police respect the law. They talk law when it suits them, when it does not they do otherwise. The fish rots from the head, if you see lawlessness, know that it has devoured the whole police fabric already. Time will tell.

    • Tatenda Mhurudzekunze

      I do believe that all police officers who do that must be arrested with immediate effect because being a motorist does not mean you have money with you always. Grabbing a license for the reason of corruption is not right at all.

  • Eddie

    But nw once you give that police officer your license he thn keeps it until hz done wt looking for mhosva dzisipo which is wrong. We do not refuse to give them bt what they are nw doing is wrong