The Gauteng budget for 2023/24 does not highlight how the provincial government will fund its e-Toll debt.
This shows that the Gauteng Provincial Government (GPG) committed to the e-Toll liability without knowing how it will fund its share of the debt.
National Treasury has also indicated to the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) during a budget meeting last night that there was no clarity on how Gauteng intended to fund its liability.
In addition, Treasury stated that using e-Toll gantries remains an option to generate revenue. However, the Gauteng government will have to decide how it wants to fund the e-Toll debt as well as its promise to repay motorists who had paid e-Tolls.
This follows after the Premier boldly announced in his State of the Province Address that e-Tolls have been scrapped.
It is worrying that the Gauteng government has no plan to fund e-Toll debt. It committed to a decision to scrap e-Tolls and take on the debt for the sake of political expediency.
The DA’s position remains clear that e-Tolls must be scrapped but that this must not be funded through a new or increased tax, as this will not lighten the burden on Gauteng residents.
There is sufficient income generated by fuel levies in Gauteng to repay the debt. The DA also proposed that under expenditure by the government be used as a funding source for e-Toll debt.
The DA will continue to fight against e-Tolls and any possible new taxes.