Cosatu vows e-tolls revolt

2012-09-20 11:51

Johannesburg - Cosatu threatened mass action on Thursday against e-tolling in Gauteng after the Constitutional Court overturned an interdict to halt the project.

"We are going to resist it with every power we have," Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu) general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi told reporters on the sidelines of Cosatu's 11th national congress in Midrand.

"Cosatu remains absolutely determined to oppose the tolls at the street level. The mobilisation... is not over.

"The call we want to make to workers and all of the people who supported us in opposition to the e-tolls is not to drop your guards. We need your energy and your unity more than (at) any other time before," he said.

Vavi said Cosatu was not surprised by the court's decision.

"Our objection to the introduction of e-tolls in Gauteng was never based on whether they are legal or not," he said.

"It was a political decision to oppose what we regarded as a move to privatise the roads and to use the user-pay principle on the poor in a manner that sidelines them and forces them onto the potholed roads that are used by the municipalities."

He said the government needed to wait for talks between concerned parties and Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe to find "alternative means" to pay back debt incurred in the construction of the roads, before implementing the tolls.

"In our view, it would be a huge mistake by government if it was to steam ahead on the basis of the Constitutional Court judgment and implement what we all know is an extremely unpopular policy decision," Vavi said.

"There will be no e-tolling. The programme of action that we will be announcing this afternoon (at the congress) includes the fact that we will oppose the tolling of the roads in Gauteng."

He said the tolling could possibly be implemented in other provinces.

"This is the first step, this will go everywhere if the government succeeds to ram it down the throats of the people of Gauteng."

The Constitutional Court set aside an interim order that put Gauteng's e-tolls on hold on Thursday.

"The interim order granted by the high court of 28 April, 2012, is set aside," said Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke.

This was because the high court had not considered the separation of powers between the court and the executive.

The High Court in Pretoria granted the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa) an interdict on April 28, ruling that a full review needed to be carried out before electronic tolling of Gauteng's highways could be put into effect.

The interdict prevented the SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) from levying or collecting e-tolls pending the outcome of the review.

Sanral and National Treasury appealed the court order, and said delays prevented the payment of debts incurred building gantries.

Reading the unanimous judgment, Moseneke said the separation of powers was vital to South Africa's constitutional democracy.

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  • heathway.master - 2012-09-20 11:58

    Time for Plan B. The Government blatantly refuses to listen to its tax payers. The Black miners never gave up until a settlement was reached. If they can protest and cause havoc like they have over the past months, why can't the Gauteng motorists have the same right. As Julius wanted to make the mine ungovernable, so must we collapse the whole system by totally ignoring the fact that it is in place. Throw any and all correspondence in the dustbin, and never give this criminality a second thought. Let’s see how this dictatorial Government handles such complete public disobedience. As said, ignore whole tolling system by training your mind to believe it just does not exist at all.

      charlesdumbwin.dumbwin - 2012-09-20 12:00

      Eish, I never thought I'd say this, but where do I sign up to join Cosatu?

      Kyle - 2012-09-20 12:01

      White people are still advantaged due the residual effects of 400 years of formal white supremacy and ongoing racism known as institutional racism not to mention the violations of BEE and AA laws. A recent study in the USA found that job applicants with white sounding names were more likely to be called back for job interviews than applicants with black sounding names. It's probably the same here in SA.

      rbphiri - 2012-09-20 12:19

      Cosatu I love the initiative, but what would work wonders is your union breaking away from the tripartite alliance, let the butthole anc fend for themselves in the 2014. More and more blacks are starting to realize what rubbish they voted for!

      reveng21 - 2012-09-20 12:25

      "There's a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious—makes you so sick at heart—that you can't take part. You can't even passively take part. And you've got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and you've got to make it stop. And you've got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it, that unless you're free, the machine will be prevented from working at all." - Mario Savio

      alan.gernet - 2012-09-20 12:27

      On this one. Cosatu has my full support!!! The Govt. had better take note of what Cosatu has said - this issue will make Marikana look like a kindergarden play group. Sorry to the Corrupt Dictators - but tolls are going DOWN!

      UNITY - 2012-09-20 12:29

      I would support Cosatu if they were not part of a Tripartheid alliance,support them anytime over Blade..but were I am confused is when Vavi and Zuma are speaking at a cosatu conference like an alliance, but cannot resolve this issue , that was created by a dumbwit! I guess we are desperate as citizens for help! As the ANC are deaf to hear our cries..I am therefore fully in support of PLAN B!!!!

      kakazed - 2012-09-20 12:35

      @davin.hansen007 That article is wrong as off the top of my head, Malaysia has similiar policies. Also it is one thing to control the political power but a totally different thing to control the economic power. Everywhere else this was taken by force.

      hallo.daar.56 - 2012-09-20 13:12

      Vavi trying hard to stay relevant after the union's failure in recent mining disputes. Unions need to be crushed ASAP

      marc.hugo.75 - 2012-09-20 16:00

      The communist ANC regime will be surprised that when it finally totters into the dust in 2013 that its demise happened over a road toll system and not something grandiose and based on some human rights disaster. On this, they will collapse. I think they should go ahead and see what happens. Its going to be fun.

  • Kyle - 2012-09-20 11:58

    "White people are mean and uncaring, morally bankrupt and ethically flawed, because white supremacy has taken a huge toll on white people's capacity to be fully human." - Robert Jensen (a white man) White people wear a mask of morality most of the time but when someone challenges the status quo of white supremacy, white privilege and profound racial inequity, the mask of morality slips from their faces. They become extremely aggressive and hostile to anyone who cares and talks about racial justice and equality. We as people of colour should speak openly about racism, racial inequality and injustice even if it seems obvious so that the spotlight is put on the agents of white supremacy and racial inequality. Once they are caught in a bright enough spotlight, the façade will crumble. Speak the truth!

      jan.human - 2012-09-20 12:47

      Where are you from? In SA there is a black majority and a white minority and with BEE 90% of ALL jobs go to blacks... Catch a wake-up!!!!More blacks are using the route being the Majority...If there was any racial justice and equality, this country might have survived...

      barker.ruing - 2012-09-20 16:26

      Plagiarism(spelling?) is a criminal offence.

  • - 2012-09-20 11:58

    First common sense decision from these guys

  • makenawn - 2012-09-20 12:00

    vavi careful now your comrades will call you names COUNTER REVOLUTIONARY

  • mluleki.duku1 - 2012-09-20 12:05

    Phambili Cosatu Phambili!!!! U r our last hope, our Justice System is failing us. Let's stand together against this. We right behind Cde Vavi!!!!!

  • sefako.mokgalaka - 2012-09-20 12:05

    It's high time the decision makers in government start paying for their personal expenses. Buy their own cars with the salaries they receive. I will be withdrawing my vote for incompetence and corruption in 2014.

      henk.vanrensburg.31 - 2012-09-20 12:22

      I hope you vote for Somebody else...

  • LouisPVenter - 2012-09-20 12:08

    Viva Cosatu Viva. On this one I am 100% with you!

  • bradley.kecskes - 2012-09-20 12:08

    Cosatu for president!! now this is worth striking for...

  • cat.naude - 2012-09-20 12:09

    i'll fight with you to the end Cosatu!

      dirk.naude.12 - 2012-09-20 12:25

      Naude's are known for their perseverance. Tough as well ;)

  • Clive.D.Buckley - 2012-09-20 12:09

    viva, Vavi viva

  • llrudman - 2012-09-20 12:11

    Viva DA Viva!

  • peterjohnjnb - 2012-09-20 12:11

    who knew? COSATU CAN actually be rather useful!

  • John - 2012-09-20 12:12

    Zwelenzima is a complete hypocrite. He talks about the government as if it is another entity.....when COSATU is part of the government(Tri-partite alliance). That is how utterly stupid & incompetent this lot are.

  • Tshilidzi Wa Ha Mukhovha - 2012-09-20 12:15

    Vavi you must concentrate on labour issue and stop interfering with Sanral about the implementation of E-tolling system that it doesn't concern you.

  • jessica.main.501 - 2012-09-20 12:16

    petrol, food , water and light all increased. now e-tolling. what else do we have to pay? oxygen ?

      denis.dendrinos - 2012-09-20 13:12

      and now petrol and food and clothes and pretty much anything you buy will be more expensive. not to mention the ripple effect - cos petrol will be more expensive to transport - it'll be more expensive, so food will get more expensive - cos it takes fuel to make food, takes fuel to transport the grains and takes fuel to transport the final product, add to that the etols....

  • vambozha.mutemi.9 - 2012-09-20 12:19

    Gauteng folk..we must hire the Marikana miners to fight for us...anyone with a white rabbit? They might need one!

  • Petzer.Franc - 2012-09-20 12:22

    Bring on the revolt!

  • magomarele - 2012-09-20 12:22

    I agree with COSATU. We must fight against these counter-revolutionary forces that seek to undermine the will of the masses. The overwhelming majority of South Africans are against eTolls. We shall fight to the last drop in ensuring that we don't give way to demands of reactionary forces from Nkandla. We’re relentless. It’s our way or no way. The undying spirit of Marikana people shall sweep across the country.

  • henk.vanrensburg.31 - 2012-09-20 12:23

    Vavi, tell the ANC that Cosatu no longer supports them. Have some balls!

  • docnoo.boddy - 2012-09-20 12:24

    I am no fan of Cosatu but the enemy of my enemy is my friend. If they protest I will heed Vavi's call and show my white face at the toi toi.

  • - 2012-09-20 12:24

    Zwelinzima Viva!

  • heathway.master - 2012-09-20 12:24

    I am not a rich man, but up until now I have just been able to pay my bills. Last month however, my R 3500.00 electricity bill finally broke the bank. In a market where the price of houses has been going backwards, the Johannesburg Municipality deemed it appropriate to increase the value of my house by 300%. My objection to this criminal re-assesment was as could be expected, totally and completely ignored. My rates therefore tripled. Petrol went up about R1.00 per litre recently, and I frankly can no longer cope financially. I can assure you that few if any of our black brothers will pay any toll fees for the simple reason that they cannot possibly afford to do so. Why must the intolerable burden of these extra Government Super Taxes yet again fall on the shoulders of the white minority. The Constitution grants equality to all, so if most of our black brothers cannot afford the tolls, why should we as whites then be forced to cough up. Show the Government that we have now passed the limit of affording anymore taxation. If we all stand together and completely ignore the e-tolling and the consequent Governments desperate and punitive threats, tolling can only die an early death and simply collapse.

  • sandor.l.varga - 2012-09-20 12:26

    Cosatu busy showing a middle finger to the ANC government. Next national election DA will take more provinces. Be positive.

  • dave.elmore.5 - 2012-09-20 12:28

    Never a dull moment in this old province of ours is there? Interesting that Cosatu is first out of the block here, and right after all the hugging at their conference?

  • docnoo.boddy - 2012-09-20 12:29

    Make the roads "ungovernable"

  • peterjohnjnb - 2012-09-20 12:31

    Most major cities in the world now have some form of congestion tolling. Having lived in many of them, I'm quite prepared to pay to use inner city roads when I need to - when that cost becomes to high, I take the tube or bus - that's the clincher right there. There is as yet, NO RELIABLE public transport system at large in Johannesburg to support full scale use of the Gautrain, thus tolling is farcical at best. Methinks someone needed a new mansion overseas......

  • 123sdp - 2012-09-20 12:33

    They push up food and fuel prices. They increase the interest rates of the lower income earners and now to further STEAL from SA they want to implement e-tolling. There is more than enought toll gates as its is - Thanks but NO THANKS! GREEDY GOVERMENT...I felt relieved when I heard of the post-ponement of e-tolling ( E TOLLIE) . We as SA citizen deal with enought stresses as is. Climb down your pedastoel and start being for your country - Comon Goverment

  • corne.hubinger - 2012-09-20 12:36

    There is an easy way to protest if all do it. Take stickers proclaiming we are against the tolls and stick it over your number plate. Although I realise this is illegal, if hundreds of thousands of motorists do this, how are they going to process every case they will have on their hands? We should stand with Cosatu on this, AND FIGHT! We are way more than them!

  • docnoo.boddy - 2012-09-20 12:39

    At last the ANC is doing some good. Through their incompetence they are finally uniting South Africans.

  • Daniel Mah - 2012-09-20 12:41

    I'm in, I'm in - hope there wont be any firing of rubber bullets

      robqb - 2012-09-21 18:10

      Nope. Only steel tips.

  • dentamokhabz - 2012-09-20 12:50

    If implemented will be making the poor suffer more and the rich getting richer.

  • michael.a.collins.9659 - 2012-09-20 12:54

    If they want to toll the roads then scrap taxes on fuel, choose one, they cannot have both

      jurie.nel.3 - 2012-09-20 13:55

      Wanna bet, Michael?

      jurie.nel.3 - 2012-09-20 13:59

      The problem is, the signs are there. The cupboard is bare. This is why the Department of Finance got involved in the court case. There's nothing left to plunder - only a huge debt burden. And the lower strata (Marikana miners et al) now want their share of the promise of "a better life for all" - and there's nothing left to share. Cry, the beloved country.

  • Mpotsiseng - 2012-09-20 12:54

    The government is in the process of pointing a loaded gun at its face. THERE WILL BE NO E-TOLLING. I will protest. Petrol is going up again, and now we must pay for roads as well.. ARE THEY FREAKING MAD???

  • Judy - 2012-09-20 12:55

    They will want to cover these outlays somewhere. If we manage to crash the e-tolling we will have to be wide awake for the next round. Increased Licence fees or Tyre Tax or some other ridiculous excuse to milk ALL South Africans

      henry.kruger.520 - 2012-09-20 19:57

      The tyre tax is already here. R 2.50/kg for tyres. See REDISA

  • sarel.koen - 2012-09-20 12:56

    Ek revolt saam !!!!!

  • other.justin.1 - 2012-09-20 13:15

    Cut the damn gantries down! If they will not listen then they must feel.

  • SirFGrumpy - 2012-09-20 13:19

    Boycott the tolled highways, drive cross country in your fancy 4 times 4's. Or cycle to work? Better still catch that lovely Gautrain, its great! I live in Durban, "check the worry in my eyes" :). But behaving badly, that's not on chaps!

  • darryl.maze1 - 2012-09-20 13:31

    What did our wonderful president say the other day about the Majority and manority???? The majority had more rights than the manority???? Well Mr President, The majority are against the E-Toll so you and your MEC's, Ministers and the constitutional court are the minority which means we the ppl have the power to say no to e-tolls. Thats how you explained democeracy. So put that in ur pipe and smoke it.

  • Jabulane Cuba - 2012-09-20 13:32

    Vavi uyis' skelem. Angithi i-investment arm ye-Cosatu has ama-vested interests kuma e-Toll. hay' suka maan

  • phillys.winterbottom - 2012-09-20 13:40


  • magomarele - 2012-09-20 13:52

    We must take the war to SANRAL and JHMPD. Those are the most dangerous criminals in the country. They scheme and connive to milk out innocent motorists. They've turned motorists into cash-cows who fund their posh life-styles and unquenchable thirst for financial power.

  • tshepo.maganedisa - 2012-09-20 14:12

    When miners in Marikana were protesting you were busy criticizing calling them hooligans and now because it suits you, you now want to define the courts and government saying you are not going to pay, why because it affects you now - hypocrites

      bullardx - 2012-09-20 14:33

      Tsepo... With Marikana, it affected da workers onli, This e-toll effects every driver cuz it iz proper daylight robbery which makes sense in protesting against.... Try open your eyes and see da difference: Miners strike an protest coz de not earnin enuf...-we protest because money is being takin from us... So think about dat before you come with silly "Hypocrit:p" comments

  • gert.nell - 2012-09-20 14:18

    Viva, Viva!!!

  • rohin.jadin - 2012-09-20 14:37

    I will join you

  • aspruyt - 2012-09-20 14:44

    Let us burn these gantries to the ground!!!!!!

  • zaks2217 - 2012-09-20 15:07

    Go Vavi! We as South Africans must unite against a system that seeks to transfer the burden onto taxpayers because of complete mismanagement and utter greed. The foreign company that was contracted to this project has made billions. Won't be surprised if our government officials pocketed from it. To pay e-toll is absolutely taboo to me and I don't see why we should pay for their incompetence!

  • my10cent - 2012-09-20 15:15

    I dont have debt and i have enough money to pay for modern comforts - bring it on!

  • polelo.phokwane - 2012-09-20 16:39

    Cosatu mustn't confuse the people. Remember cosatu has an alliance with Anc,now whatever Anc does cosatu is mathematically involved(if A=B and B=c then A and C are equal, as B is common)That means,ANc=Billing of roads,Cosatu=Anc therefore Billing of roadS=Cosatu.The only solution is that Cosatu get out of politics and be only labour movement,finish 'n klaar

  • kasper.mbayi2 - 2012-09-24 11:16

    I wish Cosatu can be brave enough this time to protect poor SA citizen's paying e-tolls. Not like Cosatu failled to shut down labour brokers.

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