Outa distances itself from alleged e-toll fraudster

Stoyan Hristov Stoychev appeared in court for allegedly using false number plates to avoid paying e-toll fees.

Outa's Wayne Duvenhage. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa) says a case in which a man faces nearly 2,000 charges for trying to defraud the e-tolling system has nothing to do with its anti-etolling campaign.

Stoyan Hristov Stoychev appeared in the Pretoria Magistrates Court on Tuesday for allegedly using false number plates for 10 months to avoid paying e-toll fees.

Outa's Wayne Duvenage says this case has nothing to do with the gantries.

"We said the system was going to exacerbate the problem and that's exactly what it is doing. There are hundreds of people doing this but this is not about tolling or not paying for them, although Sanral would love to make it that, for the fear factor."

Gauteng Premier David Makhura is expected to make an announcement on the future of the multi-billion rand system by the end of the month.

Last month, Outa said it hoped 2015 would be the year to bring an end to the wasteful expenditure of e-tolls and to realise the system had failed.

Makhura promised to meet with national government this year to discuss the report conducted by a panel he established last year to work on a way forward.

Labour parties, political parties and interest groups have made submissions to the panel, with the majority asking for the system to be replaced with another model, to pay repay the debt for the upgraded Gauteng freeways.

Meanwhile, the premier said the controversial system is here to stay and all that's left to decide now is how the tolls will be paid, what the tariff rates should be and who will be exempted.

He admitted the system is currently unfair.