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'We won't pay': Mboweni receives backlash for tweets on e-tolls

Tito Mboweni took to his Twitter account to respond to Gauteng Premier David Makhura's stance on e-tolls.

FILE: Finance Minister Tito Mboweni addressing the media prior to his Annual Budget speech taking place on 20 February 2018 in Cape Town. Pictures: Cindy Archillies/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Road users have hit back at Finance Minister Tito Mboweni over his recent comments about paying e-tolls.

Mboweni took to his Twitter account to respond to Gauteng Premier David Makhura's stance on e-tolls, which he mentioned during his state of the province address this week, saying he is committed to scrapping the tolling system. He vowed to even pay some of the debt with the local government budget.

"As the provincial government, to demonstrate how committed we are to ensure that e-tolls are no longer in place, we are prepared to contribute to something ourselves," Makhura said.

Mboweni on Thursday tweeted his views on e-tolls, saying road users must pay up.

During his first budget speech, Mboweni made it clear he was against the scrapping of e-tolls.

“If we want a road transport infrastructure that works, we need to pay our tolls. Government remains committed," he said.

“There’s nothing for mahala. It doesn’t exist mahala. To get something you must first get something from Paul.”

Some members of the public, as well as politicians, disagreed with Mboweni, however.

The Transport Department said that Minister Fikile Mbalula viewed the push-back against e-tolls as an urgent matter and the future of the system was high on the agenda when he met with Transport MECs on Friday afternoon.

Meanwhile, the African National Congress in Gauteng lashed out at Mboweni over his social media commentary about e-tolls.

ANC Gauteng secretary Jacob Khawe said Mboweni was the only official in national government still hellbent on the e-toll debate.

“He presents himself as if we are reckless and as if he is the only national office bearer who think about the debt. We object him.”

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