Justice Project SA describes Sanral draft regulations on eTags as ridiculous

JOHANNESBURG – Justice Project South Africa has responded with amazement to the fact that SANRAL has claimed in its media statement that the essence of the “South African National Roads Agency Limited and National Roads Act Regulations Draft” is not intended to compel motorists to buy eTags and register with SANRAL.  With the exception of the first paragraph, their release (below ours) reads like an advertisement for eTags and nothing more!

The core essence and purpose of the draft legislation, whilst not directly stating that motorists will actually be forced to have SANRAL’s modern-day, electronic dompas in their vehicles is quite clearly intended to provide for just that.

The draft legislation deals almost solely with the appointment of enforcement officers under section 54 of the SANRAL Act which wasn’t previously defined in the SANRAL Act and now seeks to legislate that “an employee in full or partial uniform” may “at any time enter any motor vehicle and inspect such vehicle and any electronic device installed therein for the purpose of toll collection.”

If indeed there is no requirement for motorists to have an electronic tag, then why would it be deemed necessary to write 3(1)(g) (amongst others) into this legislation?  Why also does the Department of Transport feel that it is necessary or justified to grant the SANRAL Gestapo-like powers which surpass those grated to real law enforcement agencies like the South African Police Services with respect to search and seizure of people’s vehicles and driving licences and other licensing documents?

So rushed was this draft legislation that the “(1)” part of 3(1)(g) was in fact left out in the document published for comment.  The legislation drafters were also quite clearly ignorant of the existence of two other little pieces of legislation – the Criminal Procedure Act and the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa; which enshrines the right of every person not to have their person, home or property (which includes a motor vehicle) searched without warrant.

Had the Department of Transport and SANRAL have not adopted the arrogant attitude and grossly incompetent lack of attention to detail they have with respect to this entire eTolling debacle, they would not have had to rush to draft poorly thought out legislation or waste people’s time commenting, within very tight timelines, to draft legislation which violates the Constitution and therefore cannot constitutionally be passed into law by Parliament – unless of course, the Constitution is discarded and changed in its entirety as has been mooted recently, prior to enacting this atrociously ridiculous draft legislation.

Best Regards,

Howard Dembovsky

National Chairman – Justice Project South Africa (NPC)

Association Not For Gain  |  Incorporated as a non-profit company under the Companies Act, 2008  | Registration Number 2010/019972/08

Media Release from Sanral

Road users not obligated to buy an e-tag

The South African Roads National Agency SOC Limited (SANRAL) would like to clarify to road users that it is not compulsory for road users to buy an e-tag for Gauteng e-tolling. Registering with an e-tag is optional. Road users are therefore not forced to buy an e-tag but are encouraged to obtain one to enjoy the cost saving benefits available to e-tag users.

The registration procedure communicated by SANRAL and stipulated on the SANRAL website states that the road users can register for Gauteng e-tolling with a South African ID or passport number, physical and postal addresses, contact details (cell phone, landline, fax number and/or email address), account payment details (either cash or bank account or credit card details for those who choose the debit order option), vehicle licence plate number, and make and model of vehicle. Users are also not required to provide their banking details. There are many payment options including cash or electronic funds transfer (EFT) from which the user may choose to set up the e-toll account.

Having an e-tag linked to the e-toll account is an option that is chosen by the road user. The e-tag qualifies road users to the e-tag related discounts. These include the 48 percent e-tag discount and frequent user discounts that are available only to e-tag users. The e-toll tariffs have also been capped at R550 per month for motorcycles and light motor vehicles that are registered with an e-tag.

The e-tag also offers road users protection against licence plate cloning as the e-tag cannot be cloned. The e-tag is linked to one specific vehicle and can only be used with that vehicle.

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