Transport Dept urges motorists not to panic over future of e-tolls

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni and Gauteng Premier David Makhura got into a heated debate on social media a few days ago over the future of e-tolls, forcing the president to intervene.

An e-tolls gantry on the highway in Gauteng. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Amid a public fallout over the future of e-tolls, the Transport Department has urged motorists not to panic.

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni and Gauteng Premier David Makhura got into a heated debate on social media a few days ago, forcing the president to intervene.

Mboweni is adamant that motorists must pay for the controversial system, while Makhura is not backing down and wants e-tolls to be scrapped.

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula also tried to calm the waters, urging both political heavyweights to keep the discussions offline.

His spokesperson Ayanda-Allie Paine said that the matter was receiving urgent attention.

"I think it would be grossly unfair to judge Minister Mbalula against his predecessors. The dynamic has changed, the conversation has changed and he will sit down with all the parties that are involved and find the best possible solution. August is the deadline that has been given and August is the deadline that will be met."

President Cyril Ramaphosa has given Mbalula until August to come up with a plan on the future of e-tolls.