UPDATE: “Drive-Slow” motorcade protest gathers more support

HumanIPO reported earlier the Cosatu motorcade protest against e-tolling began in Braamfontein and Katlehong with 40 people, but the protest has since gathered more supporters.

The motorcade had gathered so many more protesters by midday in Johannesburg that the entire convoy almost came to a stand still.

Protesters took to sticking their heads and bodies out car windows and sunroofs on the M1 highway to shout out their support for the protest against e-tolling.

Some of the protesters shouted “down with e-tolls” while others sang in protest from their cars. Police also persuaded protesters who began walking in front of the motorcade to get back into their cars.

Truck drivers travelling on the N3 supported the protesters by slowing down, hooting, waving and shaking fists in solidarity.

“I already have to support my children. I can’t support my children together with e-tolls,” a truck driver told News24. Another truck driver said “they should demolish those stupid things. We are already paying for these roads… and now they want to charge us double.”

A court application requesting the scrapping of the e-toll system has been delivered by the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance, but a ruling has not yet been made. 

Last week Cosatu asked protesters to join the march with their bicycles but Johannesburg Metro Police banned the use of bicycles because they are not motorised vehicles. Tractors are allowed.

“Yes, tractors are allowed because it is a vehicle, but no bicycles are allowed,” Superintendent Wayne Minnaar told News24.

General secretary for Cosatu requested protesters park their cars at the nearest e-toll gantry for “the whole day.” Metro police however, warned any cars not involved with the motorcade will be towed away.

Thus far no incidents have been reported regarding the motorcade protest except traffic was congested on the N3 and M1 North.

HumanIPO reported earlier today the controversial e-tolling system will monitor and electronically charge motorists as they pass a gantry on the highway by means of a fitted e-tag.

Cosatu is against this because they say that workers cannot afford it and the government should scrap the e-tolling system in favour of a better public transport system.

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