Picture: SOWETAN
Picture: SOWETAN

THE South African National Roads Agency (Sanral) announced on Monday that it will begin issuing the first civil summonses to individuals who had persistently failed to pay their e-toll debts.

Sheriffs in different jurisdictions in Gauteng will issue the summonses. Companies will also be targeted but because of the higher amounts involved, their cases will be handled by the High Court.

Project manager for the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project Alex van Niekerk said the decision to issue summonses came at the end of an extensive period of communication between Sanral and vehicle owners who had neglected to pay outstanding debts. “It is a natural conclusion to the process,” he said.

Since the introduction of the 60% discount on e-toll debt in November last year, Sanral and Electronic Toll Collection, the company that runs the e-tolls on behalf of the agency, have made it quite clear that it will also introduce a process of debt collection against serial defaulters.

“Sanral has a responsibility towards the country and the thousands of compliant vehicle owners, who regularly pay their e-toll accounts, to recover the outstanding debt from defaulters,” Mr van Niekerk said.

“The global ratings agencies and the investment community are also looking towards Sanral and expect us to demonstrate our commitment to financial responsibility and high standards of corporate governance.”