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'Talks will hopefully reduce e-toll confusion'

Busa hopes discussions with Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe and his toll committee will cut confusion.

Gantries on Gauteng highway. Picture: Taurai Maduna/EWN
etolls,etolling,etoll,Kgalema Motlanthe,Tolls,Busa,Business Unity South Africa
Local

JOHANNESBURG - Business Unity South Africa (Busa) hopes its discussion with Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe and his e-tolling committee will reduce confusion and uncertainty around the project, it said on Friday. 

Motlanthe, Busa and the inter-ministerial committee on the Gauteng e-tolling project held a meeting on Friday, in Sandton, north of Johannesburg.

It is one of several gatherings Motlanthe, who is chairing the toll committee, plans to hold in coming weeks.

The North Gauteng High Court granted an urgent interdict against the implementation of e-tolling in April, but government is appealing that decision at the Constitutional Court. 

The interdict application was brought by the Opposition to Tolling Alliance (Outa).

Busa vice president Brenda Madumise said the organisation hopes discussions will strengthen the partnership between government and business. 

“We can work towards moving South Africa to a higher growth and employment trajectory.”

Motlanthe said while some believe an additional fuel levy is the answer to covering the costs of new infrastructure on Gauteng’s roads, government believes a “user-pays model" will help ease road congestion in the province. 

The Constitutional Court hearing is due to be held on 15 August, when it will decide whether or not to hear Government's appeal. 

Government argues the decision to halt the project could soon cause major economic harm to the country.

E-tolling was intended to repay a 2007 multi-billion rand loan taken out by the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral), to fix Gauteng roads.

If implemented, e-tolling will see motorists pay 35c/km to use some of Gauteng's highways.

(Edited by Thato Motaung)

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