CAPE TOWN: The South African National Roads Agency (Sanral) is showing no signs of warming to an offer made by Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille to discuss alternatives to tolling the N1 and N2 highways. This leaves a court ruling as the only chance available to avoid the roads being tolled.
Western Cape High Court judge Ashley Binns-Ward yesterday reserved judgment in the case pitting the City of Cape Town against Sanral. The city argued that its nearly four-year delay in challenging the tolling project be overlooked "in the interest of justice".
De Lille told Business Day Sanral had not responded at all to her offer to discuss alternatives to fund the N1 and N2 upgrades. She made the offer last week.
Sanral has said tolling is one of its only sources of income to upgrade roads. The likelihood of it changing this stance is slim unless compelled to do so by the courts.
The N1 and N2 were declared toll roads in 2008, while the city initiated a challenge only in 2011. If Sanral's decision to toll and a government declaration that opened up the process were not set aside, the roads agency could be tolling the city's road users unlawfully, said the city's legal counsel, Geoff Budlender. He said that although the delay in the city's court challenge was outside the limits of the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act, the legislation also stated that the interests of justice must be considered in such decisions.
"The consequence of this is that R50bn of public money will be spent on a project which was not lawfully accepted. Another consequence is that members of the public will learn that tolling is happening even though the process could be unlawful, simply because the city delayed in bringing its challenge to court."
Sanral's legal counsel, Bruce Leech, argued last week that the agency had only two sources of income - appropriations from Parliament and tolling. He said that, according to the same act, review proceedings should be made without reasonable delay and within 180 days.
I-Net Bridge For more than two decades, I-Net Bridge has been one of South Africa’s preferred electronic providers of innovative solutions, data of the highest calibre, reliable platforms and excellent supporting systems. Our products include workstations, web applications and data feeds packaged with in-depth news and powerful analytical tools empowering clients to make meaningful decisions.
We pride ourselves on our wide variety of in-house skills, encompassing multiple platforms and applications. These skills enable us to not only function as a first class facility, but also design, implement and support all our client needs at a level that confirms I-Net Bridge a leader in its field. Go to: http://www.inet.co.za
LEGAL DISCLAIMER: This Message Board accepts no liability of legal consequences that arise from the Message Boards (e.g. defamation, slander, or other such crimes). All posted messages are the sole property of their respective authors. The maintainer does retain the right to remove any message posts for whatever reasons. People that post messages to this forum are not to libel/slander nor in any other way depict a company, entity, individual(s), or service in a false light; should they do so, the legal consequences are theirs alone. Bizcommunity.com will disclose authors' IP addresses to authorities if compelled to do so by a court of law.