Article by: Ntando Mncube
Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula took a train from Mabopane to the Pretoria Station, as part of his inspection of the new refurbished rail-way line and station.
The railways and stations were badly vandalized last year and had to be closed down. The line opened on Monday is finally operating after being shut down in August last year for refurbishments.
The railway line from Mabopane to Pretoria will bring relief to hundreds of commuters. An estimated number of 300 000 people is set to benefit from the now working rail way lines.
However the Minister highlighted his at PRASA as he expected all this to be complete last year, he also mentioned that all major lines like Soweto and Tembisa will open soon and gave a timeline of March/April.
“It has taken us time but here we are,” he said. When asked about the security and safety at the stations and train as he mentioned last year, the Minister responded by saying “We do have capacity now to respond, we must just support the capacity and resource it to be able to fight back, armed response and technological support”.
He further said that there will be private companies helping out but they will be with the PRASA support.
According to Mbalula the modernized trains are produced at Gibela and they are the reasons there were delays, other reasons were the lack of focus management and failure to meet deadlines.
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