Free Parking in Cape Town?


As bare-knuckled politics in the city of Cape Town – where no single major party, the ANC, DA or ID gained a clear majority in the recent elections – moves into its umpteenth round, the perils of the “winner take all” system by which we humble taxpayers are goverened are becoming ever clearer.

Yesterday, South Africa’s second-highest court, the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein (whose rulings are overturnable only by the Constitutional Court in Joburg), rejected an appeal by the city – lodged before the elections by Cape Town’s former, ANC-led government – that an earlier judgment against a parking tender be reversed. The original judgment held that the tender was irregularly awarded to the winner, the oddly-named Numque 20. The tender process was shrouded in secrecy because the government, as the absolute ruler of Cape Town, didn’t have to include outside interests (i.e., opposition councillors) in the process.

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Head spinning yet? The upshot of all this reckless awardin’ and appealin’ and rejectin’ is that, legally, Cape Town now has no parking operator. Free parking for everyone in the CBD! SA Blog advises all motorists to hurry over and get their fair share of it before the city’s new absolute rulers (led by the DA) put their own parking measures in place (by next Tuesday, apparently). But not today, which is a public holiday, when parking is free everywhere regardless.