Editor's noteOpinion

No sympathy for Sanral

THE South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) needs R1.8 billion within the next three months because of financial challenges caused by delays in the implementation of e-tolling.

Based on the most recent e-toll tariffs, Sanral reported it was losing R200 million a month in revenue while the project was not implemented.

For Sanral and the government, the e-tolling wound was self-inflicted.

Sanral authorities may approach all the major banks, or beg if they wish to do so. They may also try micro-lenders. But the custodian of the national road network will get no sympathy whatsoever on this one.

Begging, taking up loans and playing victim will not change the way the motoring public feels about e-tolling.

No-one, whether in the corporate or public sector, should initiate projects such as e-tolling without full buy-in from those affected – and then cry foul when shown the middle finger.

As critics argued over the years, other methods of funding the highway upgrade could have been explored. Roads along the e-tolled highways should have been upgraded to cater for motorists who refuse to pay e-tolls. This was not done.

Tax money could have been used too. After all, governments the world over have a duty to maintain the highways in the first place. Yet, hasty decisions were made to e-toll the highways with very little consideration given to the users of the roads.

Sanral is not in trouble: it is simply living up to the old-age adage of reaping what you sow.

Related Articles

Back to top button