E-tolls e-day: how we got to this point

The long-awaited electronic tolling system (e-tolls) on Gauteng’s highways has launched.

This follows several years of delays due to court challenges and a public outcry.

Below is the timeline of events leading up to the day Gauteng motorists started paying:

2007

  • October 8, 2007 – Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project (GFIP) is officially launched.
  • October 12, 2007 – Intention to toll sections of Gauteng’s freeways published in Government Gazette. Public asked to comment.
  • November 14, 2007 – Closing date for public comment on the proposed introduction of e-tolls.

2008

  • March 28, 2008 – Sections of Gauteng freeways declared toll roads in Government Gazette.
  • June 26, 2008 – Construction of the first phase of the GFIP commences.

2010

  • June 2010 – The SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) starts erecting toll gantries along Gauteng’s freeways.

2011

  • February 4, 2011 – Sanral announces e-toll tariffs and that registration commences in the second quarter of 2011.
  • February 18, 2011 – Congress of SA Trade Unions announces it will call for strike action over the introduction of e-tolls.
  • February 22, 2011 – The then transport minister Sibusiso Ndebele suspends implementation of e-tolls and establishes a committee to address concerns about the tariffs.
  • March 2011 – Public consultation process on e-tolls takes place.
  • June 2011 – GFIP steering committee announces reduced e-toll tariffs following the public consultation process.
  • August 10, 2011 – Cabinet approves the revised tariffs for e-tolls.
  • October 23, 2011 – Ndebele orders that e-tolls be halted and that further consultation take place.
  • November 2011 – Public hearings held on e-tolls.

2012

  • February 22, 2012 – In his budget speech, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan announces that e-tolls will go ahead at reduced rate in April of that year.
  • March 2012 – Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa) applies for an urgent interdict in the High Court in Pretoria against the implementation of e-tolls.
  • April 29, 2012 – The court grants Outa an interim interdict pending a full judicial review.
  • March 22, 2012 – Treasury files an appeal against the interim interdict in the Constitutional Court.
  • August 15, 2012 – Case is heard in the Constitutional Court.
  • September 20, 2012 – Constitutional Court sets aside the temporary interdict.
  • December 13, 2012 – After the full judicial review, the High Court in Pretoria rules against Outa in its application to have the implementation of e-tolls set aside.

2013

  • January 25, 2013 – High Court in Pretoria grants Outa leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) against the December ruling.
  • September 25, 2013 – Outa appeal is heard in the SCA.
  • October 9, 2013 – Outa loses its appeal in the SCA.
  • November 20, 2013 – Transport Minister Dipuo Peters announces e-tolls will go live on December 3.
  • November 26, 2013 – Sanral warns that a hefty bill awaits non-registered motorists without e-toll accounts who fail to pay for e-tolls within a week. The Freedom Front Plus announces a last-minute attempt to stop the implementation of e-tolls through an application for an interdict in the High Court in Pretoria.
  • December 2, 2013 – FF Plus application is heard in court.
  • December 3, 2013 – E-tolling system launches.

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E-tolls e-day: how we got to this point