Samwu crashes e-tolling roadshow

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IOL mot pic nov2 E-Tag supplied Samwu delegates told Sanral staff it was wrong to encourage the public to buy e-tags when there were still court processes that had not been concluded.

An SA National Roads Agency Ltd exhibition aimed at promoting e-tags was interrupted on Thursday by about 40 SA Municipal Workers Union delegates at the Birchwood Hotel in Boksburg.

The Samwu delegates invaded two stalls erected by Sanral staff and stopped an e-tags promotion.

They stormed the stands, and shouted “Down with e-tolls, down!”, while Sanral staff members were trying to encourage people to buy e-tags.

When the Sanral staff who had been manning the stall could not continue with the exhibition, they packed up swiftly and left.

Samwu spokesman Tahir Sema said the disruption had not been planned, but had taken place on the spur of the moment.

He said e-tolling was among the issues that had been discussed during the central executive meeting on Thursday.

The delegates had spotted the Sanral stall - which had sprouted because Sanral was holding a meeting at the hotel - started mobilising immediately, and decided to stage a “casual action”.

“The delegates assembled inside the stands and started singing and chanting slogans.”

He said the union was against the privatisation of roads, which was what e-tolling sought to do. Such action was going to be disastrous for the working class and the poor.

He told The Star that the protest had not been violent.

“The delegates explained to the Sanral staff why they were disrupting the exhibition. They told them it was wrong to encourage people to buy e-tags when there are still court processes that have not been concluded.”

Sema said Samwu was strongly against e-tolling, adding: “We will continue to oppose e-tolling in whichever way possible.” - The Star

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