OUTA notes with interest the relaxed conditions relating to the payment of e-tolls, as announced by the Minister of Transport, Dipuo Peters, in her Budget Vote speech on Tuesday and urges the public to take note of the following concerns.
“We believe that this announcement serves two purposes, one being another carrot to entice the public buy-in to the ill-conceived scheme,” says OUTA Chairperson Wayne Duvenage. “Secondly, we believe the prosecuting authorities have noted an extreme difficulty exists in trying to achieve successful prosecution under the current regulations, terms and conditions. For example, Sanral must provide the user with an invoice and payment is expected within seven days to qualify for certain benefits, yet how does one, especially businesses, pay within seven days, without an invoice? The Minister’s ‘reprieve’ is in fact further evidence that the system is fundamentally ill-conceived, unworkable and destined for the scrap heap of history.”
OUTA believes that:-
OUTA joint spokesperson and consultant John Clarke adds that the NPA and OUTA share a common interest to promote the Rule of Law and need to work together. “The confusion and distrust caused by the e-toll declaration, has created a wedge between citizens and the State, which must be removed. It makes absolutely no sense whatsoever for one organ of state to pursue criminal prosecution over unpaid e-toll bills while another organ of state is inviting public engagement to examine the impact that e-tolls is having on the productivity of the region, the social well- being of its people, and the implications for the environment”.
Meanwhile OUTA urges the public to continue to donate to OUTA at www.outa.co.za, so that we can support the first person prosecuted and finally have the unlawfulness arguments of the e-toll declaration ruled upon by the judiciary. “The very existence of Makhura’s panel at this late stage itself proves OUTA’s case that Sanral never did what it should have at the outset,” says Clarke.