The decision on the electronic toll is imminent, says Mbalula

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula

  • Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula said the final ruling on the financing model of electronic tolls is imminent.
  • He was working with Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana to help the government reach a final decision
  • During the budget vote in Parliament, he confirmed that his department has produced 1 026 674 driver cards since January, with a backlog of 526 841 cards as of 16 May.

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula said the final ruling on the financing model of electronic tolls is imminent.

Mbalula presented his budget vote for the Department of Transport in Parliament on Wednesday afternoon. This comes amid uncertainty about South African National Roads Agency Limited’s (Sanral) electronic toll system to pay for the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project, which has met with public resistance.

Mbalula said he was working with Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana to help the government reach a final decision on financing the Gauteng highway improvement project.

He said a decision on the matter was “imminent”, even though it took a long time.

“We are alive to the negative impact the delay in making the final decision on electronic tolls has on [Sanral] budget and its ability to raise capital for its catalytic projects, ”Mbalula said.

In his vote on the budget, Mbalula detailed the billions in financial support that are committed to funding programs and stabilizing Sanral and the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa).

Prasa has been shaken by challenges, including the theft, vandalism and destruction of its rail infrastructure and leadership instability. Former CEO Zolani Matthews successfully contested his dismissal, which was declared invalid by the courts.

Mbalula said Sanral will continue to receive medium-term support from the Department of Transportation to help extend its national road development program.

“An allocation of Rand 76.4 billion goes to the South African National Roads Agency. The transfers to Sanral represent 33.5% of the department’s medium-term budget and 65.5% of the road transport program budget.” , Mbalula said.

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Mbalula said Prase will also receive significant medium-term financial support for capital, operational and restructuring purposes.

“Recognizing the centrality of providing affordable, safe and reliable public transport services, capital transfers to Prasa will increase from Rs 12.6 billion in 2022/23 to Rs 13.5 billion in 2024/25,” he said. .

Mbalula said the capital transfers would go towards bus refurbishment, Prasa’s rolling stock fleet renewal program, signaling and other capital projects, which include rail infrastructure safety.

“Operational transfers to Prasa are expected to increase from R7.2 billion in 2022/23 to R7.8 billion in 2024/25,” Mbalula said.

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He said R45.3 billion, or 59.3% of the allocation to Sanral, is planned to upgrade, strengthen and renovate the national freeway network, while R2.8 billion is earmarked for Moloto Road.

“A budget of 3.7 billion rupees is earmarked for the N2 Wild Coast project and 2.1 billion rupees is earmarked to finance reduced tariffs for the Gauteng highway improvement project,” the minister said.

Mbalula said the department had produced 1,026,674 driver’s license cards since January, with a backlog of 526,841 cards as of May 16.

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