South Africa: Officials Say No Contingency Plans for Train Commuters


During a parliamentary National Council of Provinces (NCOP) delegation's inspection of the state of damage and theft at Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) in Gauteng on Thursday, 29 October, MPs heard that there were no contingency plans for train commuters.

The parliamentary delegation inspected three extremely damaged train stations, including the Katlehong, Kliptown and Maraisburg train stations. Prasa Gauteng manager Nelson Malefane told Daily Maverick that the theft and vandalism would set back the rail agency more than R3-billion in Gauteng alone.

"The Johannesburg-Vereeniging line is a very busy line with thousands of commuters. Does Prasa have a contingency plan for train commuters or have you just dumped them?" Gauteng legislature deputy chair Mpapa Kanyane asked Prasa officials.

"We acknowledge the damage, there is no way anyone can justify what happened, and this is just the tip of the iceberg considering that you have only visited three stations," Malefane retorted.

The vandalised Katlehong train station. (Photo: Bheki Simelane)

It was clear from the questioning of Prasa officials that the delegation, led by Amos Masondo, was annoyed at the manner in which Prasa operations in the province were handled.

"These guys are not taking us seriously. Why are you...

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