NAIROBI, September 17 – Registrar of Motor vehicles Simon Ole Kirgotty has blamed the increased cases of double registration on the sale of salvaged vehicles by insurance companies.
Kirgotty said some insurance companies had been colluding with dealers who buy salvaged vehicles and use their logbooks to register stolen cars.
He said many of the cases reported by the police involved stolen vehicles that were registered with documents duplicated from genuine vehicles.
“This is very serious and it involves the insurance companies. They have been ignoring the law by issuing logbooks to buyers of salvaged vehicles,” the registrar said, when he was called to the Flying Squad headquarters in Nairobi to inspect two vehicles that had been impounded for the same purpose.
The owner of one of the double-cabin vehicles, which had been purchased from the US Embassy, used its documents to register another vehicle before selling it to an unsuspecting buyer.
One of the vehicles was impounded in Nairobi, while the other was found in Eldoret.
Flying Squad chief Musa Yego said the suspect had since been arrested and arraigned in court.
Apart from Wednesday’s case, Kirgotty said many incidences involved transit vehicles stolen and later registered, using documents obtained from salvaged vehicles.
“That is why I am warning insurance companies that they will be held responsible if found to have been involved in any of these transactions,” he said.
“The law requires that insurance companies submit logbooks and plate registration numbers of written-off vehicles before they dispose of them. I don’t understand why they decide to flout this regulation,” he stated.
Two weeks ago, two matatus with identical registration numbers were impounded and a suspect arrested.
One of the vehicles operated in Nairobi, while the other was being used in Mombasa.
Both the vehicles were found to have genuine insurance certificates from two different companies.
On Wednesday, Kirgotty revealed that he had ordered the Association of Kenya Insurers (AKI) to develop a database of all insured vehicles to curb cases of double registration.
“Once that record is developed, these dealers will not be able to get their vehicles insured. Companies will be in a position to detect every single case of people trying to insure vehicles already insured by themselves or other companies,” he vouched.