DA WELCOMES ANC E-TOLL RETHINK

Neil Campbell MPL

DA Gauteng Spokesperson for Roads and Transport

Reports that the Gauteng ANC is rethinking e-tolls are encouraging. However what is missing from their thinking is that the tax on fuel must be ring-fenced. They advance the suggestion as a “temporary” solution but if it can work temporarily it can work permanently.

The Democratic Alliance is also concerned about their long term suggestion that secondary roads should be tolled, as this would require far more capital outlay than the entire Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project (GFIP) and will merely compound the problem.

Of further concern is their idea that businesses be taxed on a once off basis. This is extremely risky as it opens the door to fleecing private business to cover government inadequacies on an ongoing basis, which would cause businesses to close and jobs to be lost.

The dogged persistence of Cabinet to push ahead with unpopular e-tolling is illogical unless there are benefits for some influential cadres from the toll collection company, its affiliates or its subsidiaries.

If the ANC is serious about abandoning e-tolls then government must stop the e-toll collection contract and withdraw from the expensive constitutional court challenge which is being fought with taxpayers money.

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