The South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) says it has not requested any law enforcement agency to question road users about e-tolls, despite claims from Gauteng motorists which suggest otherwise.
DA shadow minister of transport, Manny de Freitas, said earlier this week that he has been inundated with calls and emails from Gauteng motorists who have been threatened by Sanral at various roadblocks over e-tags.
“Motorists have shared their experiences with me of how they have been intimidated and threatened by Sanral and traffic officials,” he said.
The Justice Project South Africa (JPSA), said recently that it also received calls from Gauteng motorists regarding roadblocks and intimidation by branded Sanral vehicles.
“Sanral has no mandate to do “on road enforcements and road blocks,” spokesperson, Vusi Mona told BusinessTech.
He said that an e-tag simply enables the road user access to various discounts and the ease of payment. These benefits cannot be forced upon road users.
“Sanral has definitely not requested any law enforcement agency to question road users whether they have e-tags or not,” he said.
Mona pointed out that Sanral personnel are civilians and have no authority to stop any vehicle to enforce e-toll laws.
“Sanral is confident that none of its personnel has even done so. And we are assured by the Gauteng Department of Community Safety (GDCS) that none of its officers have been instructed to do so. When the GDCS does road blocks, Sanral assists it with equipment and access to data,” he said.
When Sanral previously denied the roadblock claims, Mona noted that “there could be people who are doing this illegally in our name, or it is one of those urban legends now gaining a life of its own.”
Mona urged any road user who has been stopped purportedly to check if they have an e-tag to contact Sanral, adding that if anyone posing as a JPMD officer has stopped any motorist, such a road user must contact the JPMD.