Roads agency Sanral has denied claims that it lied about the number of e-tags in circulation, it was reported on Thursday.
“It would be downright stupid of us to lie about this,” Sanral CEO Nazir Alli was quoted by Business Day as saying.
Responding to claims by the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (Outa), he said the auditor-general’s office would begin its audit of Sanral this month, ahead of the financial year end on 31 March. Sanral would have to provide proof of its claim that 936 000 tags were registered, he said.
The agency was willing to correct problems with incorrect billing. People who did not live in Gauteng, had never used a tolled highway, were too young to drive, or, in one reported case, were dead, had received bills.
Alli said so far 1% of problems reported related to incorrect user information, which was low for such a large system.
Meanwhile, Sanral spokesman Vusi Mona said drivers who received an excessive e-toll bill had failed to comply with the time frames stipulated in the enforcement of e-toll violations.
Drivers who did not have an e-tag would not be eligible for the 48% discount and other mark-downs and they would have to pay an additional cost if the fee was not paid within the stipulated seven days.
An unregistered e-tag driver with an outstanding balance of R100 would have to pay R192,31 because the benefit of the 48% discount fell away, Mona said.
If the driver failed to pay within the seven-day grace period, the bill would escalate to R576,93, but the driver would be eligible for a 60% discount on the R576,93 fee if it was paid within 30 days after the grace period.
If the driver paid the bill between 30 and 60 days after the seven-day grace period, a 30% discount on the R576,92 would apply, Mona said.
If the driver failed to pay the R576,92, the offence would be handed over to the prosecuting authority and it would be dealt with in terms of the Criminal Procedure Act.
“Failure to comply with this could result in a criminal record,” said Mona. — Sapa