President Cyril Ramaphosa has condemned in the strongest possible terms the reported attack on a female train driver and 10 other Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) staff members along the Pretoria-Pretoria Pienaarspoort corridor this week.
Prasa has confirmed that the driver was stripped naked, hit with a brick and dragged into thickets as part of a sustained attack on trains along this corridor, and that a further 10 employees were attacked during this incident.
President Ramaphosa has asked Prasa for a full report on the incident no later than tomorrow.
At the same time, Transport Minister Blade Nzimande has given the President an undertaking that a plan outlining measures to normalise the situation around Prasa services and assets has been developed and shall be announced shortly.
The Pretoria incident is regrettably one in a series of assaults on Prasa passengers, staff and infrastructure around the country.
President Ramaphosa condemns the actions of people who destroy public assets and abuse fellow citizens who are doing their best to deliver services to communities, as in the case of the injured train driver.
Government will not allow crime of any kind to go unpunished, and we will act particularly severely against criminals who destroy public assets or services. These criminal acts affect users of such assets and services, as well as personnel who are themselves members of our communities.
Where grievances exist, government is always open to hearing from communities and working with South Africans to overcome any problems people may face. However, there is no grievance that justifies violence or vandalism.
In Human Rights Month, we must again condemn violence against women, as was experienced by the train driver.
President Ramaphosa called on law enforcement agencies and Prasa to do their utmost to bring offenders to book and called on communities to join government in efforts to sustain services, such as public transport, that benefit all South Africans.
President Ramaphosa wished the affected Prasa staff members a speedy recovery from this week’s traumatic incident.
Source: The Presidency Republic of South Africa