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Cesa was never 'influenced' by Sanral

The organisation is the only interested party to motivate for the e-tolling system to remain.

The e-toll review panel has wrapped up its first week of consultations.Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Consulting Engineers South Africa (Cesa) says although it's the only interested party so far to motivate for the e-tolling system to stay, it was never influenced by South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) to make its submission.

The e-toll review panel, which was appointed by Gauteng Premier David Makhura, has wrapped up its first week of consultations.

It received input from business and labour, with only Cesa opposing a fuel levy to replace the e-tolling system.

Earlier this week, Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) Gauteng Secretary Dumisani Dakile told the panel sitting in Midrand that the system was the most immoral project - next to the arms deal.

He also said that e-toll gantries posed a health risk, saying although he did not have any data to support his argument, the lasers used to scan vehicle number plates were dangerous.

But Cesa's Wally Mayne says e-tolling is the best way to collect money for the roads that have already been upgraded.

"It has enabled good funding to be procured specifically for the project. It has satisfied investors, they have sight of the income stream and so forth. We support tolling in support of the user pays principle."

The panel will resume with submissions from civil society organisations on Monday.

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

E-TOLLING HAS 'HIDDEN COSTS'

Business Unity South Africa (Busa) says the current e-tolling collection method has numerous hidden costs and is far too expensive.

Busa is the second business organisation to oppose the system and to propose that a fuel levy will be the most effective way to ensure compliance by motorists.

Busa's Kgatlaki Ngoasheng says there are compelling reasons why e-tolls aren't working

"Business doesn't agree with payment within seven days of transaction. This is just an administrative nightmare."