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prasaGroundUp reports that Members of Parliament (MPs) expressed annoyance on Tuesday with the failure of the Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Prasa) to offer solutions to Cape Town’s rail crisis.  

During a marathon hearing of the Portfolio Committee on Transport, MPs heard presentations by Prasa, the Rail Safety Regulator (RSR) and civil society coalition UniteBehind.  “Showing pictures of vandalism does not help us find a solution,” said Leonard Ramatlakane, acting chairperson of the committee.  Prasa’s presentation, by acting group CEO Cromet Molepo, addressed issues like the extent of vandalism, cable and equipment theft, and the status of accident investigations.  Short, medium and long-term plans to improve train security were also described.  These plans included the implementation of “security technology such as alarms, CCTV and night-vision drone technology”, concrete walls in “high-risk areas” and “vandal proofing of critical operating infrastructure”.  But Ramatlakane called the presentation “a cut and paste job”, and said that Prasa had not offered solutions.  The most pressing concern raised was the reopening of Metrorail’s Central Line in Cape Town, which has been closed since 9 January.  Prasa said Metrorail planned to get the Central Line re-opened by 21 February.  The committee was adjourned to next week, when the Prasa board has been told to present solutions and deadlines.

  • Read this report by Aidan Jones in full at GroundUp
  • Read too, Commuters put Prasa’s ‘atrocious’ train service under scrutiny at Parliament, at Daily Maverick

Get other news reports at the SA Labour News home page