Halting of taxing will take its toll

Cosatu calls for better public transport as e-tolling put on ice.

Cosatu calls for improved public transport.

JOHANNESBURG - The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) claimed on Sunday a solution to the e-toll saga will not be found until there is safe and reliable public transport in Gauteng.

The trade union federation said it was committed to finding solutions on how government will fund the controversial e-toll system and the road upgrades that came with it.

The project which was due to go live on Monday was halted after a meeting between Cosatu and the African National Congress (ANC) last week.

On Saturday the North Gauteng High Court granted the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (OUTA) an interdict to stop the launch of the system.

The court ordered the system to be reviewed.

Cosatu scheduled more talks with the ANC to find alternative ways of funding the project and repaying money borrowed to build roads.

"One of the biggest things that we are going to pursue is the need for a real, accessible, safe and cheap transport system," Zwelinzima Vavi told Eyewitness News .

Business Unity South Africa then warned that government and the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) will have to deal with the cash flow problems that come after halting the e-toll.

During the court case the National Treasury said that stopping e-tolling could have a negative impact on the country's debt ratings as Sanral would default on its repayments.

Business Unity's Ray Parsons said, "Some temporary arrangements may have to be made in order to bridge the gap between what has been decided now and when the system becomes operational again."