Cape Town Mayor Dan Plato said that he will be writing to President Cyril Ramaphosa requesting for a Hawks taskforce to investigate the train arson in Cape Town.
This comes after City’s Fire and Rescue Service were called to respond to an alleged arson blaze at Cape Town Station on train platforms 10 and 16 at 2.20am. The fire soon spread to adjacent platforms, destroying two full train sets comprising 18 carriages and was extinguished at 4.53am.
Plato said train carriages burned and thousands of commuters will suffer as they will be unable to get to work and school on time. Jobs will be lost yet the people in charge show no plan of action as nobody is held accountable for this economic sabotage.
According to Plato over the past three years, more than 140 train carriages have been burnt in several separate incidents but no one has been prosecuted. One allegedly mentally unfit person was arrested some months ago, but other than that the South African Police Services (SAPS) has failed the city.
Plato went on to call the rail service “a shadow of its former self” leaving commuters abandoning the trains thus leading to our roads clogging “up with more cars, buses and taxis”.
He said Prasa, Metrorail and SAPS need to get their house in order and the city cannot continue to allow their failures to impact the residents of Cape Town.
Western Cape Transport and Public Works MEC Bonginkosi Madikizela also pleaded for co-operation with all stakeholders to finally put a stop to the train arson attacks crippling the service in the Western Cape.
At a briefing after Thursday’s fire, the MEC said he believes there is a syndicate behind the arson attacks since last year and cannot comprehend that they still haven’t been caught.
More: Cape Argus