E-Tolls officially switched off in Gauteng

E-Tolls on the N1 highway near the Rigel Rd offramp. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency(ANA)

E-Tolls on the N1 highway near the Rigel Rd offramp. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency(ANA)

Published Apr 12, 2024


Transport Minister Sindiswa Chikunga and Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi led the celebrations on Thursday midnight as the government officially terminated the e-tolls.

There was ululation and screams as the clocking hit 00:00, bringing an end to a system that most South Africans have refused to buy into and pay for after many years.

As of Friday, motorists will no longer be billed for the use of the e-toll network.

The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) waged a lengthy battle on behalf of motorists to put an end to the e-toll system. It said this week that government had yet to apologise for their failures around the scheme.

The switch-off took place on the N1 South Buccleuch Interchange freeway in Johannesburg on Thursday midnight.

Chikunga, Lesufi, Transport MEC Kedibone Diale Tlabela, and the South African National Roads Agency SOC Limited (Sanral) officials formally switched off the gantries.

The infrastructure is now expected to be used for crime fighting efforts to track and detect stolen vehicles, while also capturing speeding motorists.

On Wednesday, Chikunga confirmed that e-tolls would be scrapped but motorists would still be expected to pay their outstanding debts.

The Government Gazette was published just towards the end of March, however, how the debts will be collected will be announced at a later stage.

She said the e-toll gantries would now be used as speed traps, as well as monitoring highways to capture stolen vehicles and cloned plate numbers.

Lesufi said the system was delaying the plans to maintain roads in the province but mainly on the N1 and N3.

He said roads are a financial muscle of economic growth and development but it was disturbed by e-tolls.

“Now that we have this as history, the growth of Gauteng will start," Lesufi said.

Many motorists refused to pay their bills, saying their bills were too high.

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