Cosatu want highway tolls scrapped

2011-07-02 07:07

Labour federation Cosatu has called for the proposed Gauteng highway tolls to be scrapped.

In a statement released today by the union’s national spokesperson, Patrick Craven, Cosatu said it was shocked by the department of transport’s director-general George Mahlalela’s assertion that the principle of tolling has been accepted and that the issue was now the amount motorists had to pay to make it more affordable.

Craven said there has virtually been no consultation with the labour federation except in one instance during a public meeting.“Cosatu has never been consulted on these tolls and remains adamantly opposed to the principle,” Craven said.

The proposed reduced toll tariffs were released yesterday by Mahlalela, who is also the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project steering committee chairperson.

Mahlalela said the reduced charges would now be submitted to the government for consideration.

Craven promised that the entire federation would be marching and picketing in support of those that called for the scrapping of these toll gantries around Gauteng roads.

“We are confident that thousands of other Gauteng residents will be joining in these protests as well,” he said.

He said the federation has issued a notice under Section 77 of the Labour Relations Act with the aim of taking strike action if the tolls were not scrapped.

Mahlalela said several meetings between interested parties and the committee took place between March 24 and April 6 this year.

Submissions from the public were also received.According to the proposals, toll tariffs for Gauteng’s highways could be between R0.05/km and R0.09/km cheaper for cars, minibuses and motorbikes with e-tags.

Mahlalela told reporters yesterday that the reduced charges would be submitted for government’s consideration.

Light motor vehicles are expected to pay R0.40/km instead of R0.49/km, minibus taxi drivers R0.11/km instead of R0.16/km and bikers R0.24/km instead of R0.30/km.

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