Busa welcomes e-toll task force

Business Unity SA (Busa) on Saturday said it welcomed the elevation of e-tolling issues to a top-level inter-ministerial task team headed by Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe.

“It creates an important mechanism which could tackle the outstanding problems of the e-toll system in their totality,” Busa spokesman Raymond Parsons said in a statement.

On Friday Cabinet appointed a special committee to be chaired by Motlanthe to co-ordinate all work around the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project.

Committee members included the ministers of transport, finance, public enterprises, performance monitoring and evaluation, and the director general in the presidency.

The committee would, among other things, move rapidly to ensure SA National Roads Agency Ltd’s (Sanral) financial stability was not affected in any way.

It would also meet appropriate interested parties to find constructive solutions and consensus on the outstanding matters.

The team had already started researching alternative models for funding road construction and improvements.

Sanral had planned to introduce e-tolling in Gauteng on May 1.

However, a court ruling issued on Saturday halted the e-tolling plans pending the outcome of a full court review.

Parsons said Busa hoped that interested parties from business and labour would have an opportunity to make submissions to the task team on the significant cost, regulatory and financing components of the e-toll system.

“Busa trusts that the time gained by the delay in the implementation of the system will be productively used by the major stakeholders to find practical solutions to the challenges that exist,” he said.

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Busa welcomes e-toll task force