Citizens’ rights group, OUTA, has reported a massive response from the public in the wake of its June 5th appeal for a million Rand to enable it to take its e-tolling case to the Supreme Court of Appeal in September this year.
“The response has simply been overwhelming,” said OUTA Chairman, Wayne Duvenage. “By close of business on Thursday at 17h00, some 27 hours after our press conference, we had received over R120,000 and things were looking really good. Then, four hours later, as the overnight interbanking process updated around 21h15, I could hardly believe my eyes as the SMS notifications sent my phone ablaze with donations pouring in. By the time the notifications stopped some 40 minutes later, we had received around R540,000 from just under 800 entries into OUTA’s bank account!”
Duvenage added he was moved to see the number of cash donations made. “People had actually taken the time to go into the bank and deposit cash amounts of R50, R100 and R200, in places like Mamelodi, Stilfontein, and other areas in the province. I cannot begin to explain the emotion,” he said. At the other end of the scale, many families gave R1000 deposits and a few companies and organisations donated tens of thousands, the largest donation being R75,000.
“After this response to our call for help, there is no doubt in my mind that people throughout Gauteng and South Africa are strongly opposed to the ill-conceived plan to toll our freeways,” Duvenage said. “This is a resounding message to the authorities that the people will no longer be trampled on and that they will not tolerate their funds being wasted through expensive and inefficient systems on which they have not been consulted on.”
OUTA expressed its thanks to all who donated. “This is your case and you have mandated OUTA to fight on. And fight on we will,” Duvenage said. “We still need another R500,000 to get us to the Supreme Court, but we ought to reach that target by the end of the weekend if this effort is maintained.” He called on the public to continue to donate. “OUTA still has outstanding bills of R3 million to pay in addition to the R1 million needed by 21 June, but today’s response is the stuff that gives me hope and makes me proud to be a South African,” he concluded.