Metrorail guard shot dead in Cape Town

2018-01-10 10:38
(Duncan Alfreds, News24)

(Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Cape Town - A 50-year-old Metrorail security guard was killed in a robbery in Khayelitsha, Cape Town, resulting in the suspension of the line between Khayelitsha and Bishop Lavis as police investigate, the parastatal said on Wednesday.

"Our sincere condolences to the family and colleagues of the security guard who lost his life so needlessly," Metrorail regional manager Richard Walker said.

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"This incident is indicative of the environment which our employees and customers are exposed to. Urgent intervention is required to stem criminal activities in the communities."

Services on the affected lines have closed and tickets will not be sold until further notice. Golden Arrow bus service has been approached to see if they can assist in transporting commuters and an announcement in this regard will be made later. 

Walker said Metrorail wants assurances that trains can operate safely before services resume.

Police spokesperson Captain FC van Wyk told News24 that a murder case was opened after the guard was shot at around 20:30 on Tuesday night, after being robbed by unknown suspects.

Metrorail has indicated previously that it cannot put up with cable theft and crime in its service area any longer.

The City of Cape Town's transport department has indicated that it wants to gradually take over the running of the service to rescue it.

Demand for armed security

Meanwhile, general secretary of the United National Transport Union (UNTU) Steve Harris told News24 that the union welcomed the closure of the central line, which he says many commuters from Khayelitsha rely on. 

"We have demanded that armed security personnel be placed on the central line. There were no security guards with firearms present when the guard was shot last night," he said.

Harris said it was disturbing that the government had not come to the table with solutions to the increasing levels of crime taking place at train stations.

"It is unbelievable how much crime has increased as more and more criminals realise how much of an easy target train stations are. I am not convinced that a wall will be a protective measure against crime. Perhaps placing the army at train stations for a short period for stability is something we need to consider," he said.

Read more on:    metrorail  |  cape town  |  crime  |  transport

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