Shosholoza Meyl’s troubled return a reflection of ANC government’s incompetence

Issued by Thami Mabhena MP – DA Shadow Deputy Minister of Transport
10 Dec 2023 in News

Please find attached a soundbite by Thami Mabhena MP.

The DA expresses deep concern over the interruption of the Shosholoza Meyl long-distance rail service due to cable theft, highlighting the ongoing challenges faced by the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) and the Department of Transport (DoT).

Passengers en route from Johannesburg to Cape Town were forced to conclude their journey by bus on Friday after overhead wire cables were stolen between Kaalfontein and Muldersvlei.

In a statement, Prasa acknowledged the disruption, stating, “Prasa deeply regrets the interruption of the MLPS (Main Line Passenger Services) long-distance service from Johannesburg to Cape Town on Friday, 8th December 2023. The journey was unexpectedly halted at Wellington Station due to the theft of overhead cables between Kaalfontein and Muldersvlei.”

The DA condemns the incident as a clear reflection of the ANC government’s incompetence and lack of commitment to resolving critical issues in the rail sector.

The Department of Transport has once again demonstrated its disregard for the well-being and convenience of South African citizens. The PR exercise surrounding the Shosholoza Meyl’s return has ended in a predictable debacle, showcasing a high level of incompetence and ineptitude.

The DA is not surprised by these events, given the ANC government’s focus on public relations instead of addressing the root causes of rail infrastructure challenges. The DA is committed to prioritising infrastructure replenishment, new rail builds, and increased maintenance budgets. We pledge to secure rail infrastructure to prevent incidents like cable theft, putting passengers’ lives at risk.

The DA calls for accountability and transparency in managing public funds, especially in entities like Prasa, where mismanagement has been evident. We look forward to the 2024 elections, confident that a new government will bring about the necessary changes to ensure a reliable and safe rail transport system for all South Africans.

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