We've got news for you.

Register on SowetanLIVE at no cost to receive newsletters, read exclusive articles & more.
Register now

Railway passengers thrilled at return of trains

High taxi fares burden commuters

Transport minister Fikile Mbalula taking the train from Mabopane to Pretoria.
Transport minister Fikile Mbalula taking the train from Mabopane to Pretoria.
Image: Facebook

Train commuters in Mabopane were thrilled to be joined by transport minister Fikile Mbalula in their morning train to Pretoria.

Mbalula, accompanied by Prasa management, visited the Mabopane station, north of Pretoria, and hopped onto the 6.20am train to Pretoria to assess the train service which started operating this week after a two-year absence,

Train commuter Koketso Nyathela, 29, from Soshanguve, said that residents must learn to protect the rail infrastructure or else they will be left without an affordable mode of transport.

“I hope we have all learned a lesson because a taxi is so expensive, others had to resign due to not affording a taxi fare, it was really tough,” she said, adding that it is the commuters' responsibility to protect their respective stations.

“We cannot be okay with watching people vandalising any infrastructure or properties, this time we really learned the hard way, it was tough without the train,” said Nyathela.

Commuters have been forced in some cases to spend five times more on transport, using taxis and buses, due to the absence of trains.

Joseph Sibiya, 36, from Soshanguve, told Sowetan that he has been praying to God to bring back the train before being killed by a junkie taxi driver.

“Thank God we will rest from being harassed by taxi drivers who smoke nyaope, good bye jukulyn taxi drivers nie meer,” he said.

"Metrorail train drivers all come to work sober minded, they respect commuters and they provide better services,” said Sibiya

Ronald Sekonya, 30, a Mabopane resident, said he was happy that security measures have been prioritised,

“We would like to see more security measures being improved,” he said, with a deep sigh of relief from two years of tremendous transport costs and distress.

Would you like to comment on this article?
Register (it's quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.