Prasa requests for another extension for relocation of families living on a railway line in Langa

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The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) says it will approach the high court to ask for yet another extension regarding the relocation of families living on a railway line at Siyahlala informal settlement in Langa in Cape Town. PRASA filed a court application early last year for their eviction.

The rail network on the central line has been left to decay following theft of overhead cables, vandalism and the number of informal dwellers who erected shacks on the railway line.

Metrorail suspended its operation on the route in 2019. Siyahlala informal settlement expanded during COVID-19 period. The order by the court to move families by the end of November last year was extended until the end of this month.

“We have taken note, we still not finalise, or the HDA has not yet finalised the land for relocation and  at the moment we have instructed our attorneys to go and make a presentation to the judge about extension as we will not be ready by the end of July,” says Prasa board chairperson Leonard Ramatlakane.

Prasa indicated costs over R2 billion to restore the central line including the relocation of the families. Locals are hoping the process will be expedited.

“Some of the challenges we are facing are water, electricity and toilets. This place is filthy and we live with our children. We go to work and we are not safe with electrical connections right around us, says a resident.

“I doubt that is going to happen. We have been told the same story since last year and to me it sounds like another talk shop. I don’t see it happening anytime soon,” another Resident explains.

The Transport Ministry is expected to hold a media briefing on the matter next week.

In the video below, Prasa to approach high court over relocation of families living on a railway line:I