Defiant Cosatu also says no to e-tags

2012-10-03 21:17
(Picture: Sapa)

(Picture: Sapa)

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Johannesburg - The public should not buy e-tags because Cosatu would strongly oppose the introduction of e-tolling, spokesperson Patrick Craven said on Wednesday.

"The federation rejects the argument for 'user-pays' for basic public services like our roads, and repeats its warning to the government not to even think about implementing e-tolls."

Craven took on Transport Minister Ben Martins for reportedly saying that consumers could go and buy their e-toll discs, as the department was busy concluding talks on the matter.

Martins should be aware that Cosatu and most residents of Gauteng were opposed to the tolls, Craven said.

A task team, set up by the Congress of SA Trade Unions and the African National Congress, was still investigating alternative funding means.

In addition, a court review of the e-tolling system would only take place next month.

"The minister's announcement appears to imply that the ongoing consultations and the court review are mere formalities and a public relations exercise, and that e-tolling will be going ahead anyway," Craven said.

The inter-ministerial committee on the Gauteng freeway improvement project said earlier that Gauteng motorists would know on Friday how e-tolling would be put into practice.

On Tuesday, the Freedom Front Plus said motorists should not, under any circumstances, buy e-tags.

"The fact is that the e-toll system is still not operational and that important legislation, which would make the paying of the e-tolls enforceable, is still outstanding," spokesperson Anton Alberts said.

Alberts said tariffs had not yet been published.

It was also important to note that the e-toll system's accounting system for non-holders of e-tags depended on the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences (Aarto) Act, which was still not properly functioning.

"The majority of the notices and fines which are being issued in terms of Aarto, are not legal, such as the fines or notices which are being sent by ordinary post," he said.

"Therefore, payment notices for the use of the e-toll system by non-holders of e-tags will also be issued illegally and would be non-payable.

"For this reason... road users should not register for e-tags."

Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance spokesperson Wayne Duvenage said on Monday that the review hearing of the e-tolling system would still take place in November.

He said motorists should wait for more clarity on the issue before purchasing e-tolling discs.

- SAPA
Read more on:    cosatu  |  ff plus  |  anc  |  outa  |  ben martins  |  patrick craven  |  transport  |  tolls
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