Minister Madikizela welcomes PRASA’s Central Line Recovery Plan
I welcome the Central Line Service Recovery Plan outlined by PRASA Administrator, Mr Bongisizwe Mpondo this morning.
The residents of the Western Cape need a functioning train service that will allow them to access opportunities, get to and from work and visit loved ones. We need to do everything possible to ensure this happens.
The Central Line, a corridor from Cape Town train station to Chris Hani in Khayelitsha with a connecting line from Philippi towards Kapteinsklip in Mitchells Plain was suspended in November 2019 due to unprecedented theft and vandalism of signaling and electrical infrastructure.
The overhead lines between Bonteheuwel and Nyanga, Philippi - Stock Road, Khayelitsha – Chris Hani and Philippi – Mitchells Plain stations have been stripped and stolen. This means about 220 000 train commuters have been left stranded and force to use alternative transport.
PRASA unveiled that over the next six months, they will deal with infrastructure rehabilitation which includes building 4 metre high concrete walls to protect infrastructure and demarcate the rail reserve; install security cameras and security technology to assist with crime prevention and response; permanent way rehabilitation to improve condition and remove speed restrictions; restore and or rebuild sub-stations that have been damaged by vandalism; replace overhead electrical lines and complete modern re-signaling project.
I am very happy with the progress that has been made thus far. This is a clear indication of what the government can achieve if we put our differences aside and work in the spirit of cooperative governance and intergovernmental relations. We are willing to play our part in fixing this: we can help get things done.
The team led by the Administrator and the Western Cape Department of Transport and Public Works and the City of Cape Town have done a sterling job so far. I will be keeping a very close eye on progress made because I am eager to see the central line to be in full operation so that the commuters of the Western Cape can again enjoy the services of this very important transport mode.
This is a huge relief to our commuters who are now forced to dig deep into their pockets and pay for other modes of transport that are more expensive that the train. I am also concerned about the congestion caused by the dysfunctional system in on our roads. The economy is also massively impacted.
We have to work together to make sure we provide solutions to challenges facing our people.
We need to move with speed to ensure that services are installed as promised, and I will be keeping a very close eye on this as our residents need a functioning rail service, sooner rather than later.