Outa has pointed out that there is currently no link between outstanding e-toll bills and the renewal of vehicle licences. File photo: Thobile Mathonsi/Independent Media.

Thanks to an error in the Government Gazette, authorities won't be able to withhold the renewed licence discs of motorists with e-tolls in arrears, at least for now, according to Outa.

The opposition alliance points out that paragraph 2 of Gazette 38997 makes an erroneous reference to an e-Road regulation that had not as yet been published for comment.

This means that currently there is no link between outstanding e-toll bills and the renewal of vehicle licences, although the Department of Transport is planning to lodge an amended Gazette. How quickly these wheels of bureaucracy turn is another matter altogether, although past events might suggest that Gauteng motorists might just have some time on their side:


“Some four years have passed since the first planned launch of the e-toll scheme in April 2011,” Outa commented, “and still to this day, the comedy of errors and problems abound, all of which indicate how problematic, irrational and unworkable the entire plan has become.”

Outa Chairperson Wayne Duvenage added: “We find it rather absurd that once again, Sanral and the Department of Transport cannot get their act together, when trying to amend legislation to force the unjust e-toll scheme into being.”

Back in May, Sanral attempted to sweeten the e-tolling deal to lure motorists into the scheme. The monthly cap was halved from R450 to R225, while the previous e-tag rate, 30c/km in the case of light vehicles, would also apply to non-tagged vehicles.

Yet the public reaction seen on social media thus far implies that the public are far from keen on playing along.