The South African Democratic Teachers’ Union is extremely disappointed at the passing of the Transport Law and Related Matters Bill into law that would allow SANRAL to collect e-tolls on Gauteng freeways.

As an affiliate of COSATU, SADTU fully supports the Federation in its efforts to oppose e-tolling. We further urge the Federation and the Alliance to fight for the provision of affordable and efficient public transport that will be a catalyst to economic development and growth. Unfortunately, this law is silent on the provision of efficient and affordable public transport. Instead, it is full of offers for discounts which do not solve the fundamental problem.

E-tolling won’t solve transport congestion problems. Instead, drivers will move to other routes that are not tolled, most probably in residential areas and increase congestion in those areas. E-tolls will also cause citizens to become poorer as they are asked to pay twice. Goods and services will be affected more as they depend on transport. When business increase prices on services and goods, the poor will feel the pinch the most.

It sounds strange when one hears SANRAL and Government complaining about the increasing debt due to drivers not paying the e-toll fee when they conducted none or little public consultation before they introduced these e-tolls. People will not support something that brings no benefit to them. The entire process shows clearly that the citizens, more especially workers, were never taken to heart but treated as an after-thought.

ISSUED BY: SADTU Secretariat