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Cosatu to intensify e-toll protests

The federation says their campaign will leave no one in doubt of their capacity to fight e-tolling.

Cosatu held a drive-slow protest against e-tolls in the Pretoria CBD earlier this year. Picture: Lesego Ngobeni/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) says it will intensify its campaign against the implementation of e-tolls on Gauteng freeways.

The federation says national protests are planned for November.

Cosatu says it's angry that a bill giving e-tolls the green light was signed into law last month by President Jacob Zuma.

But the federation says while there are many things it and the ANC don't agree on, this will never destroy the alliance between the two.

Cosatu President Sdumo Dlamini says members across the country will take to the streets again next month to show their opposition to the system.

"If people had any doubt about Cosatu's capacity to mount that, let them say that in November."

The federation has once again urged motorists not to buy e-tags, saying the battle is not yet over.

It has strongly protested the programme for many months, arguing that it will simply not work.

LAUNCH DATE STILL UNKNOWN

This week, the Supreme Court of Appeal dismissed a high-profile bid brought by the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa) to stop the implementation of the multi-billion rand project.

On Friday, Transport Minister Dipuo Peters said the decision to launch e-tolling would not be reversed or revisited.

But Outa, like Cosatu, has vowed to continue the fight.

Peters says it will soon start advertising proposed tariffs for public consultation and, in the third week of November, it will announce the exact date when the gantries would go live.

Peters said people who did not want to pay should use public transport or find alternative roads while motorists who register early would get a discount.

"If you are not tagged, you will be penalised by paying more. Get the tag. It makes it easier for you to move easily. You want world-class infrastructure, but you don't want to pay for it."