In three videos published on the national road agency’s You Tube channel on August 13, the celebs gushed about how they were initially “afraid” of the system, but now they see that e-tolls create a “better” South Africa.
In his video, Touch explicitly mentions that his compliance “Was not government forcing me to pay, but I had to come to that acceptance that I live in a better South Africa.”
Mbau’s video shows solidarity with South Africans that have so far not paid their e-toll bills. She says she “hated e-tolls”.
According to her, she believes the system changed and now it’s “easier” to pay.
Dlamini says e-tolls now stands for better roads and safety, even though she was initially mad when the system came online.
However, South Africans showed disdain to the three’s involvement.
All three have faced harsh criticism on Twitter, and have been mute about their involvement.
A publicist for one of the celebs denied contact with his client for now, saying his client can’t comment on the Sanral video at this point.
Significantly, Mbau’s video sits on just over 1000 views, and received 21 dislikes. The video has no likes on the video sharing website.
Wayne Duvenhage, chairperson of the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa) said about the videos: “Is the same as them selling e-toll like it’s toothpaste.”
Although Sanral has not confirmed if the three celebrities were paid to appear in the videos, Duvenhage believes it is just another waste of taxpayers’ money.
Outa also released their official response to the videos:
“We have seen Sanral try every trick in the book to coax the public to support eTolls, from threatening SMS’s to a multi-million rand advertising campaign, the latest of which is an amusing selection of three celebrities who appear to have changed their minds, from once being opposed to the scheme, to now having suddenly fallen for the new desperate dispensation,” their statement read. “eToll will remain an irrational and unjust double tax for citizens, and no amount of sugar coating is going to sweeten the deal or get the people to change their minds to the levels required.”
Duvenhage adds that Sanral is desperate, and mentions that even the new e-toll dispensation have not enticed road users to pay e-toll bills. Outa says e-toll revenue is 70% below Sanral’s targets of bagging over R260 million per month.
Twitter responds to new e-toll advertisements
So because Minnie Dlamini pays eToll everybody must follow suite?I don't think Gauteng people are that gullible
— Phozes (@mphomontwedi) August 15, 2015
Yoh let me go pay my #etoll bill because khanyi Mbau, Tbo Touch and Minnie Dlamini say so… SERIOUSLY???
— Nkgono Neria (@neriahlakotsa) August 14, 2015