Make e-tolls unworkable: Union

The National Union of Public Service and Allied Workers (NUPSAW) has taken a decision during its National General Council, held on 22 September of this year, that it would not vote for the current ruling party.

The union said that “The unilateral implementation of new acts reminds strongly of the way the previous regime has governed this country and of the old apartheid laws that were only defeated by civil disobedience.”

NUPSAW said it is informing its 30,000 members that the only way to show dissatisfaction with the way South Africa is governed, is to vote for an alternative to the ruling party – not by staying away from elections.

NUPSAW General Secretary, Success Mataitsane said in a press statement:

“Central to our decision was to continue our fight against e-tolling and to contemplate a protest march to the office of President Jacob Zuma. We cannot allow the privatisation of our roads which are already paid for through taxation and the fuel levy. E-tolling will affect those workers who are on lower salaries and those who can’t afford to pay for e-tolling. This will affect our members, who are mainly employed in the public service, emotionally and financially, and it will add more stress to their situation.”

“Sadly this leaves NUPSAW with no other choice than to call its members to civil disobedience. We will therefore continue to resist e-tolling by encouraging our members to exercise their rights not to purchase an e-tag in order to render it unworkable, and to punish the offending political party by voting against it in the national elections. As a union we believe in the power of the workers.”

Government misleading public on e-toll: DA

The government is misleading the public about the cost of e-tolls, the DA charged on Thursday.

“It is hard to believe that more than 80 percent of users carrying an e-tag will pay only R100 maximum per month,” Democratic Alliance Gauteng premier candidate Mmusi Maimane said in a statement.

According to the Government Gazette on e-toll tariffs published on Wednesday, 82.7 percent of road users (Class A2) would pay a maximum of R100 a month if they were registered as e-tag users.

The DA said a driver travelling from Daveyton to Johannesburg would pass through at least five gantries on a return trip, at an approximate cost of R13.92 a day. This amounted to R69.60 in a five-day week, and R278.40 a month.

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court of Appeal dismissed an Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance appeal against the implementation of e-tolls by the SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral).

The DA said travelling between Alexandra and Centurion, a user would pass through at least six gantries at an approximate cost of R17.31 a day, R86.55 a week, and R346.20 a month.

From Soweto to Midrand, a driver would pass through at least 11 gantries on a return trip, at an approximate cost of R29.64 a day, and would reach the threshold of R400 a month.

For a commute between Tembisa and Germiston, a motorist would pass through at least four gantries on a return trip, at an approximate cost of R14.40 a day, R72 a week, and R288 a month.

Maimane said Government Communication and Information Service acting CEO Phumla Williams‘s remarks about e-tolls at a Cabinet briefing on Thursday showed how out of touch the government was with Gauteng residents.

“Her appeal for people to show good citizenship and pay for e-tolling is a slap in the face of ordinary South Africans who struggle to get by on a daily basis.”

Maimane vowed to put a stop to the process if elected premier of Gauteng.

Earlier, at the SA Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (SACCI) annual convention, Transport Minister Dipuo Peter said: The politicisation of e-tolls, specifically the user-pays principle, did not help anyone.

“It doesn’t help us to play politics with infrastructure development,” she said.

Additional reporting by SAPA

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Make e-tolls unworkable: Union