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Judge criticises handling of e-toll court case

The judge hearing an application to stop Gauteng's highway e-tolling criticised the handling of the project.

Mobile e-toll outlets, providing easier access to motorists

JOHANNESBURG - The judge hearing an urgent application to stop Gauteng's highway e-tolling on Wednesday criticised the way the project had been handled over the past four years.

The Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa) won an important battle at the North Gauteng High Court when its application was deemed as urgent.

The hearing into whether the project will be interdicted could resume on Wednesday afternoon.

Judge Bill Prinsloo said the fate of e-tolling only became clear in February 2012.

He accepted the Outa's argument that confusion over tariffs and exemptions made it impossible for them to launch the court case earlier.

"The minister (of transport Sbu Ndebele) only saw fit, after withdrawing these tariffs, to publish fresh tariffs on 13 April, which is less than two weeks ago [and it was] after this, the application had been launched."

With the case now an urgent one, a ruling on whether the tolls will be interdicted needs to be heard before the system is implemented on Monday.

Under the project, Gauteng motorists will pay around 30 cents per kilometre to use some of the province's highways.