The Department of Transport has said that regulation 32A will come into effect in November, and will compel motorists to provide the traffic department with their proof of identity and address.
This is similar to RICA in telecoms or FICA in banking, and will be used to update the Electronic National Administration Traffic Information System (eNaTIS) database.
eNaTIS is used by various national authorities, including Sanral when it sends out e-toll bills.
Motorists will have from November 2015 until November 2016 to provide the traffic department with updated proof of identity and address particulars.
Justice Project South Africa (JPSA) and the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa) were asked what effect this new regulation would have on the e-toll system.
Even if e-toll data is more accurate, it remains unworkable
“One of the problems that e-tolling is suffering with is the inaccuracy of eNaTIS, which is their only link to understanding who owns the vehicle and to whom the e-toll bills should be posted to,” said Outa’s Wayne Duvenage.
Duvenage said this was one of the factors they pointed out to Sanral in 2011, which would make the e-tolls costly to operate.
“They ignored us. Hence the thousands of people who do not even receive e-toll bills.”
Duvenage said as eNaTIS becomes more accurate, obviously so will the information in the e-toll scheme.
“Does this make e-tolls more right or workable? No. All it means is that that more people will begin to get their bills, the majority of which will continue to be ignored.”
eNaTIS in dire need of updating
JPSA chairman Howard Dembovsky said the benefits to Sanral and e-tolling is not the primary reason the eNaTIS database should be updated.
“In many cases, motorists’ details on eNaTIS are so out of date that it’s just not funny,” said Dembovsky.
“In some cases it’s because people have failed to update their details and in others it’s because licensing authorities take no blind notice of attempts by motorists to update their address details.”