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Toll public hearings start

2011-11-11 07:08

EDGING CLOSER: Eagerly awaited public hearings into the e-toll project are finally underway.

Public hearings on the Gauteng highway toll gates are expected to start on Friday, November 11, 2011, in Johannesburg.

The hearings are to give all affected parties an opportunity to share their views on the proposed tolls with government.

In October, transport minister Sibusiso Ndebele instructed the SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) to suspend all processes related to the tolling of national roads.

The suspension included the planned phase two of the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Plan, the Cape Winelands and the Wild Coast.


"It is important to note that there's a clear distinction or separation between phase 1 [almost completed] and phase 2 [no work has started as yet]," said transport spokesman Tiyane Rikhotso.

He said phase one was almost complete and the department wanted to hear alternative views from the public on the best possible model of financing the debt incurred.

The suspension was welcomed by various organisations including the SA Municipal Workers Union, the Freedom Front Plus and AfriForum.

In August, Cabinet approved reduced toll tariffs for the N1 highway between Johannesburg and Pretoria.

Motorcyclists were expected to pay 24 cents a kilometre, light motor vehicles 40 cents, medium vehicles R1 and "longer" vehicles R2 a kilometre.  Certain taxis and buses were exempted.

Earlier this week, drivers in Gauteng and Limpopo were urged to start registering for phase one of the e-tolls and purchasing their e-tags.

Sanral told Wheels24 on Friday that, while it had not made the arrangements for the public hearings, "we [Sanral] hear that it will be at the Johannesburg City Hall at 10:00".

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