Cosatu doubts effectiveness of govt e-toll bid

“We have no doubt that the government is going to learn the hard way again with the Constitutional Court when it fails in this application,” Vavi told reporters in Johannesburg.

It would likewise fail in its appeal against the judgment by the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria.

“The government is wasting time running in the courts at huge expense to the taxpayers.”

On April 28, the high court handed down an order preventing the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) from levying or collecting e-tolls pending the outcome of a judicial review.

Last week, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan applied to the Constitutional Court to set aside this court order. Gordhan argued that judge Bill Prinsloo had ignored the principle of separation of powers.

Vavi rejected this argument.

‘False claim’
“In our view it’s a complete false claim … that’s just an attempt to blackmail the judges not to make judgments in the best interests of the law, and the supreme law of the country, which is the Constitution.”

Instead of wasting time at courts, the government should be talking to Cosatu to find an alternative way to fund the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project. Cosatu has suggested, as an interim measure, a 14 cents a litre increase in the fuel levy.

Vavi emphasised this would only be a temporary solution.

“We will not reveal what we believe should be really a long-term solution for now because that is subject to discussions with the ANC.”


Vavi rejected an earlier comment by Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe, at a media briefing on e-tolling, that a decision taken in a meeting between the ANC and Cosatu to delay the Gauteng e-tolls by a month was just a suggestion.

Annoying
“It’s quite annoying … to be told that our agreement with the ruling party is a mere recommendation to the super power, the government,” Vavi said.

In April, while the high court was hearing the e-toll arguments, the ANC and Cosatu decided to postpone implementation of the tolls.

“The ANC says it is a strategic political sector. When we engage it we engage a strategic political sector, not an NGO that can only make recommendations to the super power, being government,” Vavi said.

The ANC, chosen by a majority, was the most important player in South Africa, not the government, he argued.

Cosatu president S’dumo Dlamini said the union federation expected the ANC to have communicated the outcome of that meeting to the government.

“The actual effect of that particular discussion was indeed the announcement that was made by the ANC, not Cosatu, that we have agreed to postpone or defer the implementation of the e-tolling for 30 days,” Dlamini said. – Sapa

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever. But it comes at a cost. Advertisers are cancelling campaigns, and our live events have come to an abrupt halt. Our income has been slashed.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years. We’ve survived thanks to the support of our readers, we will need you to help us get through this.

To help us ensure another 35 future years of fiercely independent journalism, please subscribe.

Gillian Jones
Guest Author
Advertising

ConCourt settles the law on the public protector and interim...

The Constitutional Court said it welcomed robust debate but criticised the populist rhetoric in the battle between Busisiwe Mkhwebane and Minister Pravin Gordhan

Small towns not ready for level 3

Officials in Beaufort West, which is on a route that links the Cape with the rest of the country, are worried relaxed lockdown regulations mean residents are now at risk of contracting Covid-19
Advertising

Press Releases

Covid-19 and Back to School Webinar

If our educators can take care of themselves, they can take care of the children they teach

5G technology is the future

Besides a healthcare problem Covid-19 is also a data issue and 5G technology, with its lightning speed, can help to curb its spread

JTI off to court for tobacco ban: Government not listening to industry or consumers

The tobacco ban places 109 000 jobs and 179 000 wholesalers and retailers at risk — including the livelihood of emerging farmers

Holistic Financial Planning for Professionals Webinar

Our lives are constantly in flux, so it makes sense that your financial planning must be reviewed frequently — preferably on an annual basis

Undeterred by Covid-19 pandemic, China and Africa hold hands, building a community of a shared future for mankind

It is clear that building a community with a shared future for all mankind has become a more pressing task than ever before

Wills, Estate Administration and Succession Planning Webinar

Capital Legacy has had no slowdown in lockdown regarding turnaround with clients, in storing or retrieving wills and in answering their questions

Call for Expression of Interest: Training supply and needs assessment to support the energy transition in South Africa

GIZ invites eligible and professional companies with local presence in South Africa to participate in this tender to support the energy transition

Obituary: Mohammed Tikly

His legacy will live on in the vision he shared for a brighter more socially just future, in which racism and discrimination are things of the past

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday