E-tolls: The people of Gauteng have said ‘No!'
02 October 2014
Note to Editors: This is an extract of a speech delivered by the DA Parliamentary Leader, during a protest at the Department of Transport in Tshwane. Please see hyperlinked Memorandum of Demands at the end of the statement.
Today, we march to the National Department of Transport to tell Minister Dipuo Peters that she must listen to Gauteng Premier David Makhura.
She must listen when the Premier says that the people of Gauteng overwhelmingly reject E-tolls.
So overwhelming is this rejection that he had to set up a public participation Advisory Panel, after the fact of E-tolls being installed and operating already.
Yet Minister Peters denies today that she will even consider the pleas of the people of Gauteng.
Minister Peters, listen to Premier Makhura. Listen to the people of Gauteng, who have said ‘No to E-tolls!'
Our demand to the Minister is that she legitimize the Gauteng Advisory Panel by agreeing to receive its findings.
Our demand to the Minister is that she receive the findings and take them very seriously, because they will reflect the will of the people.
Our demand to the Minister is that she takes those findings and she uses them to scrap E-tolls once and for all.
E-tolls must be scrapped, because over 10 months of operation they have proved to be a failure, they have cost South Africans millions and millions in rising prices, and they are stopping our growing middle class from thriving to become real economic agents.
The people of Gauteng, and the people of South Africa have spoken Minister Peters, it is now time to act.
Gauteng Premier Makhura has made it clear when he said: "if needs be, I will stand with the people of Gauteng" against E-tolls.
Minister Peters, you cannot ignore this growing opposition any longer.
There is now opposition from within your own party.
The DA has always stood firmly against E-tolls, we have protested, we have taken them to court, we have challenged them in parliament and we have defied to be forced to pay tolls under this unjust scheme.
Today we say to the Minister; your time to act is now. Agree to accept Gauteng's findings, and scrap E-tolls once and for all.
Text of the memorandum:
DEMOCRATIC ALLIANCE - PETITIONER
MINISTER OF TRASNPORT - PETITIONED
MEMORANDUM OF DEMANDS
We, the Democratic Alliance, Official Opposition in South Africa, hereby note that:
1. Gauteng Premier David Makhura has established a Provincial Advisory Panel on E-tolls, collecting public submissions on the socio-economic impact of the E-toll scheme in Gauteng; and
2. The Gauteng Advisory Panel will present findings at its conclusion which will evidence the socio-economic impact of E-tolls in Gauteng; and
3. Minister of Transport, Dipou Peters, has confirmed that she will not consider, study or evaluate the findings, nor will she adopt their recommendations proposed; and
4. Gauteng Premier David Makhura has confirmed that on the questionable future of E-tolls he "will stick with the people of Gauteng" and not with the National Government.
Now therefore, we, the Democratic Alliance, place before the Minister of Transport the following demands:
1. Legitimize Premier David Makhura's E-toll Advisory Panel, by agreeing to personally receive its findings and recommendations; and
2. Table the findings and reccomedations to Parliament and present them to the Minister of Finance and National Treasury for action; and
3. To end E-tolls once and for all; and
4. Come clean with South Africa that E-tolls are an inefficient and unworkable means to support road infrastructure upgrades due to their massive administrative costs and very low compliance rates.
DA Parliamentary Leader
Statement issued by Mmusi Maimane, DA Parliamentary Leader, October 2 2014
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