It is extremely concerning that Metrorail in Gauteng has lost R76 810 980,00 due to vandalism and theft at its train stations during January 2020 and February 2021.
In addition, during this period, 271 Motor Coaches and 336 Plain Trailers were vandalised resulting in a total cost R810 800,00.
Currently, there are only six out of 17 lines operating due to this.
This information was revealed by the MEC for Transport, Jacob Mamabolo, to my questions tabled in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature.
According to the MEC, 4000 additional security guards will be deployed nationally by the Passenger Railway Agency of South Africa (PRASA) during this month and there will also be the additional deployment of security guards to Mabopane Corridor as part of the Presidential projects.
The vandalism of trains in our province is putting additional pressure on our already constrained transport system in the province, while also placing an additional financial burden on our commuters who use trains on a daily basis to and from work.
Out of all the public transport available, travelling by train to and from work is the most cost-effective way to commute on a daily basis.
For a long time now, the Democratic Alliance (DA) has been calling on the Gauteng government to establish a dedicated railway police unit to help safeguard and keep our train infrastructure secure from criminals.
Where we govern in the Western Cape, PRASA has signed a memorandum of agreement with the government for the formation of a dedicated enforcement unit which focuses solely on the safety and security of train commuters and infrastructure.
The DA will continue to demand that a similar agreement be reached in Gauteng. Our commuters deserve to have a public transport system that is safe, reliable and gets them to work on time. A transport system that works efficiently will ensure that we have an economy that works.
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