Plans to repurpose the e-toll infrastructure are underway. Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi recently announced that the technology will be used for different purposes, including fighting crimes such as hijackings and vehicle theft.
This after Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana announced the scrapping of e-toll.
Treasury is proposing to set aside close to R24 billion to write off South African National Roads Agency Limited’s (Sanral) e-toll debt, with the remaining 30% paid by the Gauteng government.
The Gauteng government has welcomed the scrapping of e-toll.
It says it will in the meantime, engage other stakeholders to see how they can utilise the existing structures for crime fighting among others.
Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi’s spokesperson Vuyo Mhaga elaborates: “Finally the people of Gauteng will stop paying for the e-toll. The Premier has set up a team that will be able to deal with modalities and negotiation with Sanral, as well as Treasury in terms of the technicalities and the way the 30% debt for Gauteng will be resolved.”
E-toll was introduced in December 2013 as a pay-per-user system aimed at collecting revenue from motorists making use of Gauteng highways.
It covered a 187 km network of roads mostly those leading to Johannesburg.
The multi-billion rand project was managed by Sanral.
However, it was met with huge resistance from the public, Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) and taxi associations.
This is how road users responded to the death knell for e-tolls.
“The only question I have right now is that, what took them so long? Finally, this government has woken up and listened to the people. E-tolls were just one of their blunders. Let us hope the crime-fighting approach works. Maybe we can finally count on them for safety. I’m so excited it’s finally over, no more spam mail in my inbox.”
Mhanga says a law enforcement agency is currently working on CCTV cameras in different parts of Gauteng.
Training and personnel will be augmented.
He says details of the plan will be outlined in due cause.
The video below is the full interview with Outa’s Wayne Duvenage: