Cars without e-tags face steep charges

MOTORISTS using Gauteng freeways without e-tags will face steep charges once the toll-fee structure comes into effect.

According to a complete fee structure released at a post-cabinet media briefing, light motor vehicles without e-tags will pay 58c per kilometre, while those that have purchased e-tags will only pay 30c per kilometre.

Smaller trucks will pay R1.45c if they use the freeway without tags, compared to their counterparts who will only pay 75c if they have purchased tags. Heavy duty trucks using the highway without e-tags will pay R2.90c per kilometre while those that have e-tags will pay R1.51c.

Motorcyclists will pay 38c if they do not acquire e-tags but this goes down to 20c per kilometre if they have e-tags.

In terms of the pricing structure announced by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan on Wednesday, tolls for vehicles that use the freeway regularly will be capped at R550 a month. Heavy duty vehicles qualify for a 20% discount if they use the freeway outside of peak traffic hours.

Cabinet spokesman Jimmy Manyi was adamant yesterday that the tolling of Gauteng freeways was now irreversible and the fees announced are final.

"This is not just a bad dream, it's a reality, it's going to happen. No one should have any illusion whatsoever that this thing is going to go away. It's a fact of life and it's going to happen. Law-abiding citizens, buy your e-tags, e-toll is coming."

The planned tolling of Gauteng freeways was introduced to help roads agency Sanral pay back more than R59-billion that the agency has borrowed to upgrade roads nationally.

Gauteng freeways alone have cost Sanral R20-billion to upgrade.

However, trade union Cosatu is advocating a civil disobedience campaign and has encouraged motorists to drive through the booms but not pay when the bill is posted to them.