South Africa: Cosatu Gauteng Press Statement On the Train Incident in Tshwane

COSATU in GAUTENG is very much concern about the two train incidences which had occurred in Tshwane and resulted in injury of many workers who were on their way to work for their families. We are hoping that this incident will open the eyes of the Minister of Transport to the hardship and misery that the workers and the working class are daily subjected into as a results of lack of investment by the 1996 class project to the infrastructure and lack of concern for the transport for the workers and the working class in general.

The incident confirms our previous rejection of the Gautrain which had been constructed to serve the interest of the elite in our province while the workers and the poor are on daily basis being subjected to poor state of the trains. We believe that had government listened to us and invested the whole billions of Gautrain in Metro Rail such incidents would have not had occurred.

Those who took these decisions should take the blame and responsibility for the injuries of these workers. We hope that their conscience still exists and they should render a public apology to these victims and their families for their narrow minded decisions.

We hope that the Minister of Transport will appreciate our call for the safe, decent, accessible, reliable and intermodal public transport system and not the E-tolls which his Department intend to implement in regardless of the objections from our communities.

The E-tolls will subject many of our people to the same trains which are moving coffins. We feel that the Department does not understand and appreciate the crisis confronting the public transport system.

We call upon an independent investigation to the causes of the accident. Our members in the Train sector have on number of occasion raised this matter with us that Prasa is subjecting workers to the moving coffins and the 2011 accident in Soweto, the Debra Prada show on E-TV in 2012 and the current incidents confirms such hence our call for an independent team to investigate the incident.

We will be visiting the affected workers in the Hospital and further information in this regard will be announced in due course.

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