South African Government Announces End of E-Tolls in Gauteng

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Gauteng, South Africa – In a significant move, the South African government has officially announced the termination of e-tolls in Gauteng, effective from 11th April 2024 at 23h59. The decision comes following a collaborative effort between various governmental bodies and stakeholders to address the longstanding issue surrounding the controversial tolling system.

The Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), finalized between the South African National Roads Agency SOC Limited (SANRAL), the National Department of Transport (NDoT), the National Treasury (NT), and the Gauteng Provincial Government (GPG), outlines key aspects of the agreement. Notably, Gauteng will contribute 30% (R12.93 billion) of SANRAL’s debt to the national government, in addition to addressing backlog maintenance costs amounting to R4.1 billion. The National Treasury will cover the remaining portion of SANRAL’s debt. Furthermore, the declaration of the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project (GFIP) as a toll road will be withdrawn.

Transport Minister Sindisiwe Chikunga emphasized the significance of the decision, highlighting that road users in Gauteng will no longer incur charges for utilizing the e-toll network. Minister Chikunga reiterated the government’s commitment to providing high-quality roads and pledged to collaborate with stakeholders to ensure ongoing maintenance and development.

Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana expressed satisfaction with the agreement, stating that it aligns with the commitments outlined in the 2022 Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) speech. He emphasized the importance of resolving uncertainties surrounding the GFIP and commended Gauteng’s commitment to addressing debt and maintenance costs sustainably.

Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi welcomed the decision, noting that the e-toll system had faced widespread criticism since its inception. He emphasized the importance of addressing the affordability of the toll system while acknowledging the principle of user-pays for infrastructure development.

Themba Mhambi, SANRAL Board Chairperson, and Reginald Demana, SANRAL CEO, both expressed their satisfaction with the resolution, emphasizing the collaborative efforts of all parties involved. Mhambi highlighted the commitment to addressing the GFIP debt, while Demana expressed optimism regarding future funding opportunities for toll road projects.

The decision to end e-tolls in Gauteng marks a significant milestone in addressing longstanding concerns and providing relief to road users in the region. With a focus on sustainable funding solutions and infrastructure development, the government aims to ensure continued progress and prosperity for South Africa’s transportation network.

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