ConCourt to hear e-toll appeal

Government wants to appeal the e-tolling judgement.

Gauteng e-toll registration vehicles spotted on a Joburg highway. Picture: Andy Crawley/iWitness

JOHANNESBURG - Eyewitness News understands the Constitutional Court agreed on Wednesday to hear government's application for leave to appeal the e-tolling judgement.

In April, the North Gauteng High Court granted an urgent interdict to stop the launch of the controversial project.

The South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral), National Treasury and various government departments asked the Court to review that decision.

The Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa) filed its reply on Monday and was informed the court will hear the application on 15 August.

"We were also informed that Sanral and the other parties must file their papers by 16 July," the alliance's lawyer Pieter Conradie said.

"Outa must file by 30 July, that is, on the merits of the matter in case the appeal is granted".

Judge Bill Prinsloo granted the interdict pending the outcome of a full legal review of the project.

In May, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan made the unusual appeal to the Constitutional Court in a bid to set aside the court order halting the e-tolling project.

He is concerned the country's economy will be negatively impacted if the order remains in place until a revision process.

Government also warned that its credit rating could take a dive if it cannot repay the loans taken out to fund the system.

It took a R20 billion loan in 2007 to improve Gauteng roads.

While many organisations pushed for the system to be scrapped entirely, Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane has said tolling will eventually go ahead despite resistance from the public.

If implemented, motorists will pay up to 35 cents per kilometre to travel on some of Gauteng's freeways.