The constitutional court has dismissed a Democratic Alliance application for leave to appeal against a decision regarding the constitutionality of e-tolling legislation.
“[The court] decided it was not in the interest of justice for the constitutional court to hear it [the matter] at this stage,” DA federal executive chairman James Selfe said. “This does not mean there is no merit [to the case], just that they are not the right court.”
Selfe said the DA would meet its legal team in the next few days to discuss seeking leave to appeal in the supreme court of appeal.
In March, the Western Cape high court dismissed the party’s attempt to have the Transport and Related Matters Amendment Bill declared unconstitutional and invalid. The DA approached the high court after the bill was enacted in September last year.
The amendments were primarily intended to facilitate the electronic monitoring of traffic through toll plazas and the electronic collection of the tolls.
The DA had argued the amendments were unconstitutional and invalid because they had not been passed according to what it deemed to be proper procedure — with input from the provinces.
Western Cape high court judge Owen Rogers dismissed the application and said it was clear in his mind that provincial legislatures had no power to pass legislation aimed at meeting the purposes identified in the act.
Roads agency Sanral welcomed the constitutional court’s decision. “It is clear that in crafting this act the legislators followed the correct process,” spokesman Vusi Mona said. “The decision by the court to dismiss with costs speaks to the fact that the DA’s suit was frivolous and unnecessary.” — Sapa