Gauteng e-tolls / photo by Dominique Jacobs http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/photo-contest/2011/entries/123159/view/

“E-tolls will be terminated immediately” says ANC’s Panyaza Lesufi

The ANC says it will terminate e-tolls immediately and repurpose the monolithic gantries to fight Gauteng crime.


Gauteng e-tolls / photo by Dominique Jacobs http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/photo-contest/2011/entries/123159/view/

During a 702 Talk Radio interview, hosted by Karima Brown, the newly elected deputy chairperson of the African National Congress (ANC) in Gauteng, Panyaza Lesufi, promised to terminate the e-toll system ‘immediately’.

The decision to ‘scrap the debate forever’ surrounding continuous e-tolling came from intense discussion at the ANC provincial conference at the weekend.

The decision is final: The ANC has decided to terminate the controversial e-toll system immediately – they just have to figure out proper procedure regarding the removal of the system.

The final announcement regarding the fate of Gauteng’s e-tolls come after Premier David Makhura’s unopposed election as the ANC’s provincial chairman.

The end of Gauteng’s e-tolls

Speaking to Karima Brown, Lesufi admitted the failure of e-tolls, saying:

“The reality is these E-tolls are unpopular with our people and as a popular movement, how do we go the opposite direction of that particular feeling? We have taken a decision, let those E-tolls be terminated and let the team that will manage this process engage on those modalities to check the costs, the running and all other related matters.”

According to a report by Business Tech at the beginning of 2018, the South African National Roads Agency (SANRAL), responsible for the e-toll system, was sitting with R9.2 billion in unpaid bills, with the amount growing by R230 million every month.

E-tolls repurposed to fight crime

Commenting on the repurposing of e-tolls gantries, Lesufi indicated that the monolithic structures would stay in place, and could be used to fight crime or monitor traffic, saying:

“Let’s use them to fight crime. Let’s use them to make sure they are strict monitoring mechanisms, about the cars that are moving in our province. The majority of criminal activities in our province involve motor vehicles… either they’re hijacked, or stolen.”

Lesufi maintained that there are creative ways in which the gantries can be utilized – ways which are popular with the people of Gauteng.

When will the e-tolls be scrapped?

According to the ANC, the e-tolls will be scrapped immediately. But, in this case, ‘immediately’ does not mean right away.

First, the ANC needs to win the ballot box at next year’s General Elections, especially in the hotly contested Gauteng region.

It’s also clear that while the ANC is opposed to the e-toll system, other government agencies will be hell-bent on retaining the current scheme, namely the national treasury and Sanral.

In order to overthrow the e-tolling system, all government structures concerned will need to be convinced – this may be easier said than done

E-tolls are electronic toll collection processes that were implemented by the South African National Roads Agency Ltd (SANRAL) in December 2014.