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'Claims Sanral is broke a complete misrepresentation'

Nazir Alli said reports that the roads agency is broke are a complete misrepresentation.

FILE: Sanral CEO Nazir Alli. Picture: Sapa/

JOHANNESBURG - South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) chief executive Nazir Alli says the roads agency is able to continue repaying the R20 billion debt for e-tolls in Gauteng.

Alli today gave Sanral's presentation to Gauteng's e-toll review panel in Centurion.

He said reports that the roads agency is broke are a complete misrepresentation.

"What is the message they want to give? Is this about fair reporting? Or is this about trying to create a particular kind of an anti-tolls feeling?"

He also said reports that only 30 percent of motorists are paying for e-tolls is not true and the debt will be serviced.

"We clearly showed in terms of how we are still continuing managing to pay our debts and we would like to believe that there won't be a default."

Sanral stressed the importance of paying for e-tolls not only to pay back the debt for the new roads in Gauteng but also to maintain the existing infrastructure.

Alli that non-payment of e-toll bills by motorists will affect the maintenance of the 750,000 kilometre road network.

He also listed the benefits of e-tolls including saving time, improved safety and less vehicle maintenance due to high quality roads.

He last week pointed a finger at the media for " creating false public perceptions about the agency".

The controversial project was launched in December amid protests from the Congress of South African Trade Unions, the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance, private companies and members of the public.