TRAIN COMMUTERS CALLING FOR HELP
Written by: Samkele Sokhela
Thornwood train commuters have lodged a complaint against a construction delay of a railway platform in the station that has affected them for four years.
The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) tried to extend the platform since it has the highest number of commuters in the New Line railway. However, some nearby community members are said to have vandalized the unfinished platform. Since the other platform is not renovated, trains are forced to use one railway. This has now resulted in some commuters arriving late at their workplaces.
“I am on my third job now ever since this whole mess started. This is sad because we are getting fired from our jobs as we arrive late. And for us, the situation is currently better, because I remember about two years ago, trains weren’t stopping at our station. Drivers used to drop us at the following station,” explained fifty-one-year old Miriam Kumalo.
“I am now used to this. What is the use of crying over it?” asked Kumalo.
Sibongiseni Madlala (37), another commuter who has been using the train for six years, said, “We are frustrated because it has been more than four years now since we have been living under these conditions, and what’s frustrating us is that no one from PRASA has called us in a meeting to address us of what is happening.”
PRASA Spokesperson, Zama Nomnganga is said to have initially promised commuters that the construction would take place in a few months.
“We are currently waiting for an engineer to come back with a report which states when they are going to start construction. We are very sorry for any inconvenience. We urge our commuters to be patient with us as we are promising that, by December the second platform will start working again,” said Nomnganga.
*Picture: Thornwood Station Metrorail board