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Destruction of railway infrastructure has far-reaching impact

(Debate in Parliament on the impact on the economic lives of the most vulnerable and poor commuters due to ongoing damage to public rail infrastructure)

The destruction of South Africa's railway infrastructure does not only affect the poor and the working class. The reach of the damage is much wider and the impact it has on the economy affects everyone in the country. Rich and poor alike.

On their websites, PRASA and Metrorail boast about their role as the biggest public transport systems in the country. And yet they are not effective and it raises the important question of why not.

The general assumption is that certain factors, such as vandalism and fraud, are the biggest reasons for the sorry state of the transport system. It is, however, important to put PRASA itself under the microscope as that will probably reveal the root of the problem.

As is the case with all state institutions where the ANC government is involved – and PRASA is no exception – there is not a single one that does not need to be saved from utter ruin at one stage or another.

The case of one Dr Daniël Mthimkhulu is still fresh in our memories. PRASA proudly introduced him on television as the extraordinary man behind the new Afro 4000 locomotives. Those were the locomotives that were too high and could, thus, not be used.

The truth of the matter was quite the opposite. Mthimkhulu was dishonest. His doctorate was as false as all his other fake qualifications. The only extraordinary thing about him was his plan to have his salary doubled by talking about a substantial job offer from Germany. The job offer was, however, also just as fake as his qualifications.

That is what really caused PRASA to derail. And it all transpired in its very own head office.

Damage was indeed done to the transport system during the Covid-19 lockdown, but that was when nearly the entire defence force was deployed. Why did the soldiers not do something about it?

PRASA recently mentioned the possibility that diesel locomotives will be used more often in the future because the overhead power cables are stolen on a regular basis. But diesel locomotives also need train tracks to ride on. Nowadays, even the tracks are stolen.

The people who damage and steal the transport system's infrastructure should be charged with high treason, but in the end, it is the ANC that is guilty of high treason for the damage they have done to the South African economy over the years.

Contact details: 083 626 1497

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