Sharjah: Sharjah Police have decided to resume accepting applications for driving licences from almost all expatriates working and living in the emirate regardless of their profession, ending a five-year ban on specific professions.

A ban was placed against 86 low-paid or low-income workers in 2008 in what was attributed then as rationalisation of issue of driving licences and banning categories that don’t need to drive, Gulf News has learnt.

“Residents belonging to 86 professions will be able to open a driving licence file at traffic police departments in Sharjah,” a source from the training establishments informed Gulf News.

The new amendment on the decision was implemented on August 28.

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In 2010, the Sharjah Traffic and Licensing Department relaxed the 2008 ban by removing 12 categories from the list. These include typists, painters, calligraphers, clerks, newspaper boys, storekeepers, vendors, barbers and electricians.

Driving licences were opened to the remaining 74 categories on August 28.

Lieutenant Colonel Arif Mohammad Al Shamsi, director of the traffic and licensing department, said that in December 2008 the police issued a decision to stop issuing driving licences to people working in 86 professions to curb traffic flow. The previous decision in 2008 was made in public interest after extensive studies of the traffic flow in the emirate showed that traffic jams could be reduced by preventing 86 categories from opening a file to obtain driving licences.

In 2008, the Sharjah Traffic Department issued a decision to stop accepting applications for new driving licences by 86 categories. The ban was enforced on residents as per their profession as mentioned in their residence visa. “The move is meant to reduce the huge number of vehicles by limiting the number of professionals allowed to obtain driving licences,” Lt Col Al Shamsi said.

Sources from a number of driving institutes in Sharjah told Gulf News that their schools received the decision on Wednesday and they received a number of inquiries related to procedures for opening a traffic file and obtaining the driving licence, the cost of obtaining a driving licence and the documents needed.

source: gulfnewes