San­ral must have a sys­tem that ben­e­fits the coun­try

The Star Early Edition - - LETTERS -

IN A RE­CENT press re­port, Vusi Mona, gen­eral man­ager of com­mu­ni­ca­tions at San­ral, men­tioned that the voices of the rest of South Africa are not be­ing heard re­gard­ing the de­bate on e-tolling.

I can as­sure Mr Mona that their voices will be heard loud and clear once the de­tested e-tolling sys­tem is in­tro­duced in other parts of the coun­try. The DA, who rep­re­sents the majority of the peo­ple of the Western Cape, is fight­ing tooth and nail to stop it in that part of the coun­try.

Mr Mona says the fuel levy ar­gu­ment is flawed.

The fuel levy he says goes into the gen­eral tax pool, from which all ex­penses of all de­part­ments are cov­ered.

If this is the case, then the pre­vi­ous ar­gu­ment, that an in­crease in the fuel levy would be un­fair on the mo­torists in other parts of South Africa, holds no wa­ter as the coun­try on the whole will be ben­e­fit­ing from an in­crease in the fuel levy.

The only flaw I can see is how the bil­lions con­trib­uted to the pool, from the col­lec­tion of fuel le­vies, is spent.

I am afraid we have a greedy and cor­rupt gov­ern­ment who has al­ready cost us bil­lions in cor­rup­tion. Fur­ther, on what are they spend­ing the tril­lion they col­lect in nor­mal in­come taxes?

Be­sides, this project should not have gone ahead if there was no money in the pool. It was merely a showcase for the Foot­ball World Cup and then it was not fin­ished in time.

It is said that the av­er­age driver will only pay R500 a month for us­ing the e-tolling sys­tem. That is un­til e-toll prices go up. In a sim­ple cal­cu­la­tion, I have worked out that if the fuel levy went up 20 cents a litre and if the av­er­age mo­torist drives a car with a tank ca­pac­ity of 80 litres, it will cost that mo­torist R16 more to fill his tank and, if the mo­torist has to fill his tank four times a month, his monthly cost of petrol will be R64 ex­tra – a vast dif­fer­ence com­pared to etolling.

E-tolling is hav­ing an ef­fect on the econ­omy on the whole. Mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties will in­crease their mu­nic­i­pal rates to house own­ers. Food prices are al­ready ris­ing due to in­creased trans­port costs. Granted the fuel levy will also have some ef­fect on the cost of liv­ing but not to the ex­tent of e-tolls when it spreads even fur­ther into the coun­try.

Mr Mona says be rea­son­able. The way to go is the way we are go­ing. I say, San­ral be rea­son­able, have a sys­tem where the coun­try reaps the ben­e­fits and not the sys­tem of e-tolling where a for­eign company reaps the prof­its.

Gor­don Dally

Wel­tevre­den Park, Rood­e­poort


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