Khayelitsha trains delayed

2012-01-31 15:00
Cape Town - Metrorail trains running through Khayelitsha in the Western Cape would be delayed on Tuesday because of vandalism, the company said.

"We are still busy trying to repair Khayelitsha section, but the rest of the network [in Cape Town] is running as normal," regional manager Lindelo Matya said.

He said vandals burnt wiring boxes leading to the tracks at 03:00 on Monday, meaning new equipment had to be ordered.

"We suspect it was an organised attack by a group of disgruntled security officers who were fired in December."

Matya said Metrorail got an interim interdict against 367 contracted security guards after they went on an illegal strike in November and vandalised property.

The interdict was expected to be made permanent by the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday, following which all of their names would be published.

At least 120 acts of vandalism had taken place in the Khayelitsha and Mitchell's Plain areas since November.

Metrorail regional spokesperson Riana Scott said repairs to the network could take between several days and several weeks.


"Due to the age of the infrastructure some components have to be custom-built," she said.

Cosatu in the Western Cape expressed outrage on Tuesday at the delays.

"These delays are in part because of the lack of sufficient train sets, as well as the damage done to the train sets by some disgruntled employees," spokesperson Tony Ehrenreich said.

"Cosatu calls on the workers to stop damaging the trains and to instead take up their grievances through an engagement with the company."

Ehrenreich condemned companies that deducted money from workers arriving late because of train delays.

"It is apartheid that had placed workers so far from their work places... the bosses have benefited from apartheid and the least they can do now because of this apartheid construct, is not prejudice workers for the late arrivals."

Metrorail would operate a temporary bus service in the area during peak time until the network was restored.
Read more on:    metrorail  |  cape town  |  transport

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