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Cosatu: SA's transport system a 'ticking time bomb'

The e-toll review panel has heard that government doesn't have the political will to scrap e-tolling.

Cosatu's Dumisani Dakile at the economic impact of e-tolls hearings in Midrand on Wednesday, 27 August 2014. Picture: Sapa.

JOHANNESBURG - The Gauteng e-toll review panel has heard that government doesn't have the political will to scrap e-tolling otherwise it would have paid the debt and found an alternative pay method.

The panel has started with public consultations to assess the impact of the multi-billion rand project on the economy and the province's motorists.

The panel was appointed by Gauteng Premier David Makhura.

It will work with national government, municipalities and stakeholders to find a solution regarding the payment of e-tolls.

The Congress of South African Trade Union (Cosatu)'s Gauteng secretary Dumisani Dakile said the country's transport system is a ticking time bomb especially with the "chaos" linked to e-tolling.

He said the trade union federation acknowledges that the money used to pay for the roads must be paid back but alternative methods must be found.

Dakile questioned government's refusal to scrap the e-toll system and whether the state is acting in the interest of the poor or investors.

E-TOLLING ONE OF MOST IMMORAL PROJECTS

Earlier, Dakile said the e-tolling system is one of the most immoral projects signed into law by government next to the arms deal.

Furthermore, Cosatu has submitted proposals to the panel, saying the team should look at alternative methods to pay for the upgrades to Gauteng's freeways through a fuel levy or 1 percent business taxation.

Dakile said a fuel levy would be the best way as it's easier to monitor and the process can start immediately.

The controversial e-tolling system went live on 3 December after months of legal wrangling, protests and calls for civil disobedience.