Public transport operators urged to register for e-tolls

Monday, April 23, 2012

Johannesburg - The SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) on Monday urged thousands of public transport operators in Gauteng to register for the e-tolling system, which is set to commence on 30 April.

Sanral CEO Nazir Ali said while public transport operators, such as taxis and buses, would be exempted from paying the toll fees, operators still needed to be registered on the system to qualify for the exemption.

"We would like to give assurance to all the taxi and bus associations, including scholar transport, that they will qualify for the exemptions and that the exemptions will happen," Ali said.

He emphasised that public transport operators who did not register would not qualify for the tags.

"The reason for this is simple: we don't want people to abuse the tags, they need to be exempted because they qualify."

On Friday, Sanral published the draft regulations for exemption for public comment.

More than 500 000 e-tags have been distributed to motorists around the province ahead of the launch date on 30 April. E-tag holders will qualify for regular user discounts.

Meanwhile, Ali said SANRAL would respect any court decision regarding the e-toll implementation.

Court applications have been filed by the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa) and AfriForum to have the process halted. The Congress of SA Trade Unions has planned mass protests in the run up to the implementation date.

"We respect the laws of our country and therefore we will respect any court decision to that effect," said Ali.

National Treasury has filed papers to intervene in the application to interdict the implementation of the system.

"The Minister of Finance has instructed the National Treasury to seek leave to join the case in view of the significance of this matter for the State's financing of road infrastructure and the integrity and sustainability of the public finances," a statement said.