Sinn Féin MLA Cathal O hOisín has said that people in the North who hold an Irish passport and pass their driving test are being refused their licence, as the DVA office in Swansea does not recognise Irish passport numbers in their on line application.
Mr Ó hOisín said,
“Under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement people here are free to designate themselves as either Irish or British and hold the appropriate passport.
“However since the closure of the DVA office in the North, people who hold Irish passports and applying on line for their first licence are being refused as the Swansea DVA system is not set up to recognise Irish passport numbers.
“Swansea have told several people to apply to Coleraine for a Irish driving licence instead and have returned postal applications telling people that Coleraine deals with new licences.
“In fairness, all parties opposed the closing of Coleraine office and warned that these difficulties would arise if the DVA relocated to Swansea so these problems are not unexpected.
“The DVA need to update their online application service to accommodate those people in the North who hold Irish passports and the DOE need to make clear what services are available in the Coleraine to remove any confusion for people looking to get onto the road.”