DA calls for scrapping of Gauteng e-tolls

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has reiterated its stance that Gauteng’s e-toll system must be scrapped following the South African National Roads Agency losing its bid to implement a similar system on Western Cape roads.

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Judge Ashley Binns-Ward also ruled, on Wednesday, that the transport minister’s 2008 decision to declare portions of the N1 and N2 as toll roads be set aside.

This means the Winelands Toll Project will have to start from scratch if Sanral decides to go ahead with it.

E-tolling was implemented in Gauteng in December 2013, despite strong resistance from the public and organisations like the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (OUTA).

The DA’s John Moodey said in a statement “what has happened in the Western Cape, must now happen here in Gauteng”.

He said “e-tolls have been denying the poor access to jobs and have a detrimental effect on working class people, a fact which has now been recognised by the court”.

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Moodey called the new e-toll dispensation a “red herring to force people to pay for an unjust and unfair system” that will continue to be met with resistance in the years ahead.

Instead, he said upgrades to Gauteng’s highways could have been funded by a small increase in the fuel levy.

He described e-tolls as a “virus slowly eating away this province’s (Gauteng’s) prospects for economic growth and job creation”.

Earlier on Wednesday, City of Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille said the Western Cape High Court ruling was “a victory for all Capetonians considering what happened in Gauteng”.

Meanwhile, Sanral said it will study the “details of the decision and will assess the legal options available to it.”

The Citizen

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