DA condemns Tshwane train torching

2012-10-12 16:03
Investigators look at a Metrorail train which was set alight in Braamfontein, Johannesburg, earlier this year. (Herman Verwey, Beeld)

Investigators look at a Metrorail train which was set alight in Braamfontein, Johannesburg, earlier this year. (Herman Verwey, Beeld)

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Johannesburg - The Democratic Alliance on Friday condemned the torching of trains in Tshwane.

DA Gauteng spokesperson Neil Campbell called on police to bring the attackers to book.

"If the perpetrators of the coach torching can be identified, they should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law."

Six coaches from two Metrorail trains were set alight in Kopanong and Akasia on Thursday night.

Metrorail spokesperson Lillian Mofokeng said the trains were carrying passengers, but all escaped unharmed. Mofokeng described the damage as "severe".


Several other coaches were vandalised.

The train service to and from Mabopane was disrupted and Metrorail advised commuters to use alternative transport.

Campbell said although the attack was unjustified, the DA believed it showed commuters were not satisfied with the Passenger Rail Agency of SA's (Prasa) service.

"The incidents highlight the anger being felt by commuters at the dismal performance of Prasa and its decrepit trains, outdated signalling, and its total inability to provide reliable, punctual, safe, and affordable public transport to commuters," Campbell said.

"They also highlight the lack of efficacy of the SA Police Service, which took over the function of the old railway police and on whose shoulders the responsibility to protect passengers and Prasa property now rests."

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