Train commuters in Cape Town are appealing for services to be fully operational again. Train services in the city have been limited since the theft and vandalism of infrastructure during the COVID-19 lockdown.
Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula visited various points along the Cape Town rail network to assess the progress with ongoing repair work by Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa).
Train services were brought to a halt during the COVID-19 period, which led to the massive destruction of infrastructure.
Prasa has been trying to restore some railway lines and rebuild the infrastructure.
Some of the key priorities are to increase rail services, modernise the system, and enforce security.
“We started at the Cape Metro Rail where we are building a student accommodation which is a project of Prasa inter site. We just showcased the work that has been done. The place has received a facelift. It will be a student accommodation and transportation in terms of railway services. We are now at Parden Island where we park our trains. We are now building a wall to secure the depo,” says Mbalula.
Commuters are calling for rail services to be restored as a matter of urgency.
“They have been making these promises for over four years now. We do not trust them anymore. It has been happening for a while and there is no action,” a commuter elaborates.
“I have opted to using buses. We used trains a lot but now they are no longer viable. I can’t use trains because they no longer work as frequently,” says another commuter.