By Daniel Itai, Johannesburg, South Africa
South Africa’s largest commuter service provider, the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) has expressed optimism in the future of the state-owned entity, despite the current state of disarray.
The state-owned entity’s woes have also been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic which has since resulted in a lot of cable and railway track theft.
“I just got here on the 17th of June 2020 despite that, PRASA is still under administration.
However, we have phased in strategies and we have already launched those strategies for instance, in Gauteng, we are now running three corridors which are using diesel trains instead of using electric trains it’s a bit expensive but it’s effective.
Moreso, we have just enrolled 1 200 security personnel to assist us. We don’t operate in any corridor if the security is not intact.
However, they are corridors that would need total rehabilitation. We are currently operating 11 corridors of the 34 nationwide and we are planning on opening more as the months progress,” said Nosipho Damasane, PRASA’s CEO.
More than a million commuters rely on PRASA’s services on a daily basis but due to the current situation they have had to seek other transport alternatives which has left many in financial constraints as trains are the cheapest mode of transport.