South Africa

R100 000 reward to help catch Cape Town train station arsonists

R100 000 reward to help catch Cape Town train station arsonists
Cape Town – The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) has offered a reward of R100 000 for information that will secure the conviction of four suspects captured by security cameras setting two trains alight last week.

A total of four complete train sets, 18 carriages in total, were destroyed, amounting to R61 million in damages. Overhead electrical damage to platforms amounts to R150 000.

According to Prasa, investigations and intelligence have pointed to orchestrated sabotage within the Western Cape rail network, causing millions of rand in damage since the start of the sporadic spate of fires in 2015.

“This type of sabotage robs commuters of a reliable, safe and convenient rail service and compromises Metrorail’s ability to prepare and support Prasa’s modernisation process.

“The latest loss of capacity will exacerbate overcrowding and passenger discomfort,” Prasa Group chief executive Dr Nkosinathi Sishi said.

An analysis of vandalism patterns left little doubt that criminals were deliberately setting out to cause mayhem and delays, Metrorail provincial manager Richard Walker said.

“It’s not a coincidence that fires are set with intent to cause extensive damage and delays,” he added.

Prasa said in a statement that the destruction was short-sighted and self-defeating.

“These agents may think they are serving their own selfish agenda, but ultimately hard-working bread- winners reliant on trains pay the price.”

Anyone with information can anonymously contact the investigating officer, Sergeant Williams, on 078 037 5969.

Cape Times