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By Editorial staff


E-tolls message stays: SA won’t pay

Gauteng should not be penalised for debt owed nationally.

The saga of e-tolls – are they going, are they staying? – is like watching paint dry. And now Gauteng premier Panyaza Lesufi says national government is delaying the scrapping of the disastrous scheme.

“E-tolls in Gauteng are history. We are finalising the remaining tasks and we will be in a position to share them with you,” he told an SA Auto Week conference last week.

ALSO READ: Government delaying the scrapping of Gauteng e-tolls – Lesufi

Could the delay be because Lesufi indicated in November last year that he was in favour of paying back those motorists who had already paid e-tolls? This could cost the government more than R6 billion.

What has happened to the agreement that Gauteng would contribute 30% towards settling the SA National Roads Agency (Sanral) debt?

Could it be that someone has realised that Sanral wants all of its debt paid off, not just what it owes for the Gauteng Free Improvement Project (e-tolls to ordinary mortals)? Gauteng should not be penalised for debt owed nationally.

ALSO READ: Lesufi backtracks on e-tolls refund plans

The province that is the cash cow for the government cannot be milked to subsidise other provinces.

Whatever happens to e-tolls, the message from ordinary South Africans is clear: we will not pay again for services which should be provided by our tax.

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