Fin24

DA applies to join e-toll case

2012-08-06 12:55

Johannesburg - The DA has applied to join a Constitutional Court case on the Gauteng e-tolling project, the party said on Monday.

"As a political party, the DA has an interest in the key issue in this case, namely the extent to which courts can and should exercise their powers to interdict government," Democratic Alliance MP Jack Bloom said in a statement.

The party had asked to be admitted as an amicus curiae - friend of the court - to make a "substantive contribution" to the case.

On Friday, the court will hear arguments by SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) and Treasury on why it should overturn an interim interdict that was granted by the high court in Pretoria in April.

The interdict halted the e-tolling project until a full review was carried out.

Bloom said the party sent letters to all the parties involved in the case, including the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa), which had sought the interdict.

"Outa has not opposed our application, but Sanral and the National Treasury have indicated their opposition."

Bloom said if the Constitutional Court decided to hear the appeal, the government would try to restrict its ability to make decisions against the state on "the most narrow grounds possible".

"If government wins, then expect to see more decisions like the e-tolls pushed through without proper consultation," he said.

"It is essential that the court's substantive power of review is preserved... so that government can be challenged if it departs from rationality and due process in its decision-making," he said.