Halt on e-tolls welcomed

2012-11-23 13:45

Johannesburg - The SA Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) has welcomed the hold put on the so-called e-toll bill.

"It is a sign that government is taking note of, and acting on public views," Sacci said in a statement on Friday.

"However, an equitable way must be found to finance the improvements to the roads when the debate resumes in February next year."

The bill was withdrawn from debate in parliament on Thursday.

Transport department spokesperson Tiyani Rikhotso said the portfolio committee had held its public hearings and was due to bring the matter before parliament.

"The bill has not been withdrawn. The portfolio committee on transport had to give parliament a three-day notice for the matter to be brought before the National Assembly. The matter has been postponed for discussion," he said.

Rikhotso said that while the SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) was ready to implement e-tolling by the end of this year, Transport Minister Ben Martins felt it was important to allow "the parliamentary process to run its course".

Sacci said the fact that a substantial percentage of the e-toll fees would go to the administrative cost of the system was unacceptable.

A more efficient revenue-collecting model needed to be found.

"The withdrawal and delay in adopting a final position on the e-toll [system] reflects on the political sensitivity of the issue. A further implication of this is that the current model will remain unpopular," it said.

It would be convenient politically to explore workable alternative models rather than to enforce the current one.

Sacci said it had prepared a position on broad international best practices in infrastructure development, which it would submit to government and all partners.

  • gary.desousa.7 - 2012-11-23 14:07

    Congrats to all who worked so damn hard to get to this point ,its a mammoth effort and yes a fair way must be found to fund roads etc.This private get rich for some tender scheme was never fair nor a correct spend of our money.

  • Willie - 2012-11-23 14:15

    Stop wasting time WE DO NOT WANT THIS THINGS

  • walter.badenhorst - 2012-11-23 14:22

    Don't get exited, I fear this is just temporary. 2013 will see us paying through our noses.

  • Ntutu Dlova - 2012-11-23 14:30

    Really , what were they thinking? idiots

  • daan.klopper - 2012-11-23 14:32

    This is not good news. Not that I wish to start paying toll but its another sign of a disfuctional government and a disfunctional society. In what world do you first receive a product and then start opposing paying for it, al the while you are happily using it? Basically its theft. The fiercist critics of the system uses procedural shortcomings to promote the culture of theft, so prevalent everywhere. Think again Mr Whitecolar...

      tony.wentzel.1 - 2012-11-23 15:28

      Daan, please get your facts straight. It is SANRAL that went ahead with e tolling without properly consulting or applying their minds. All "white collars" that I am aware of accepts that the road user has to pay. What we object to is to spend more than the cost of the road, to fund collection costs. That is theft of everybody's money!

      konstabel.koekemoer - 2012-11-23 16:11

      @Daan, your comment about it being theft is the most absurd argument I have heard. We have an are paying for the roads all the time, it is called tax, be it VAT, income tax, fuel levies or whatever. The fact that government has neglected the highway infrastructure all in Gauteng and many other areas is not an excuse to suddenly want to impose another tax. And then make it a tax which is hugely expensive to collect meaning that most of the money ends up in the pockets of companies running the system ... little if any money will actually be left to pay the debt or further road improvements.

      zenithdolphin - 2012-11-26 17:55

      Daan, talking of on earth did they appropriate the Pension Fund as part of their scheme??? And if the deal has nothing to hide, why do they insist that the details not be released??? And yes,as konstabel koekemoer pointed out, they neglected the infrastructure since 1994!! Not to mention the grand theft and corruption on a massive scale that continues to this day -people are sick and tired of coughing up while the fatcats and their buddies get rich!

  • tony.wentzel.1 - 2012-11-23 14:37

    This has naught to do with "public opinion", they realise that it will be a shambles if they implement before SANRAL is ready, which they are not.

  • michael.bushes.5 - 2012-11-23 14:37

    eTolling is going through in one way or another people. Accept it, but what Gautengers dont have to accept, is to pay for this crap. Gauteng fuel levies wont be reduced when eTolling is introduced. The only option for Gautengers is to fight back against this evil and demonic government.

  • martin.theron1 - 2012-11-23 14:43

    E-tolling is a worse-case of a government in opposition to its own people! Will they never learn that the job of government is to SERVE the people, not to get rich off them! One more story of government spending lavishly on their personal appetites and I will personally lead a revolt against paying taxes to this wasteful bunch.

  • stefan.vanderspuy - 2012-11-23 14:44

    One government screw-up after the other. I guess they didn't like the idea of burning gantries before and over Christmas...

  • warwick.railton.7 - 2012-11-23 15:15

    I will never accept this crap............this is corrupt to the core.

  • cameron.briceland - 2012-11-26 10:54

    I condemn any e-tolls on any South African roads.. the roads must be paid out of the taxes received since we the people already have to pay for private schooling, private security and private medical aids and retirement savings. Nobody must the new year, I encourage everyone to say NO! If the government can't make ends meet with the taxes, then they must acknowledge their own incompetence and stupidity and stand down or expect an attitude of non-compliance. The government are not playing the game. My friends in New Zealand enjoy an honest government that works. Everybody say NO!

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