This is an increase of over 60% as compared to the GHC4 million generated from the sale of 15,544 DV plates for the whole of the previous year.

Data from the DVLA show that they sold 7,287 and 1,850 DV plates in January and February last year, respectively.

The DV plate is normally given to owners of new and unregistered vehicles who are in the process of repairing the vehicles or preparing them for sale to third parties. A DV plate is sold at GHC242 and is valid for a year.

The Deputy Director in charge of Research, Business Development and Innovation (RBD&I) at the DVLA, Abraham Zaato, told the Daily Graphic that before they upgraded the security features, the process was insecure and saw a lot of counterfeits and theft.

New DV plate

The upgraded DV plates has barcodes embedded with data such as serial numbers and relevant vehicle information and embossed with hologram stickers.

When the sticker is tampered with, they get self-destructed to protect it against forgery. If anyone tries to remove one, part of the sticker gets stuck to the surface, causing it to rip apart, destroying the entire hologram in the process.

The security upgrades on the DV trade plates include optical security features, such as microtext and laser readable hidden image, creating difficult-to-counterfeit labels that also allow critical information, such as serial numbers, to be read with the naked eye and a quick response (QR) code.

Mr Zaato indicated that number plates and in this case, DV plates are essentially the identity card of a vehicle. This is therefore what validates and protects them against counterfeiting and theft.

He explained that the authorities at the DVLA saw the need for an enhanced DV plate due to the initial weaknesses and leakages in the sector.

“As a result, in just five weeks — between January 2 and February 7, this year — of the new administration, the authority recorded sales of over 25,000 DV trade plates, representing a 53% increase over total revenue accrued from the sale of plates for the whole of last year.”

“It is exploring all avenues to design and deploy more secure products and services to the public. This is a very significant improvement over last year’s revenue,” he added.