First published by GROUNDUP
“Preliminary reports indicate that a young male, +/- 16 years old, fell from a moving train between Salt River and Woodstock while attempting to jump from one train to another,” said Riana Scott, spokesperson for Metrorail.
Simo Maninginingi Kwepe, from Zonnebloem NEST Senior School, was certified dead on the scene. The incident was reported at 7.33am. Emergency services and the police closed the line during their on-site investigation. Train traffic was diverted until 12.30pm.
Zukie Vuka, an organiser for commuter activist group #UniteBehind, said: “It is not unusual for people to jump off trains … If the next train is going to come [only] in the next hour or two, imagine if you are going to school or work. You have to be at the same station waiting for an hour because there are not enough trains. People are desperate.”
According to Vuka, a number of people have been killed on Cape Town Metrorail lines since January. Metrorail could not confirm the number killed at the time of publication. The Railway Safety Regulator reports that 343 people were struck dead by trains in 2017/18.
Kwepe died less than 24 hours after Minister of Transport Blade Nzimande announced his plans to address the problems within the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA), state-owned enterprise that runs Metrorail. PRASA has been embroiled in corruption scandals known as PRASALeaks.
“This is the reason why we’ve been saying to PRASA we need to start finding out where the money is,” Vuka said. “Because a lot of people are dying. People are being forced to ride on top of trains if they are full, and people get pushed off because they are overcrowded.”
“Nzimande announced his intention to once again find out what is wrong with our rail service by appointing a task team,” #UnitedBehind said in a media statement. “The announcement was bizarre and irrational because Minister Nzimande is fully aware of numerous reports on governance and management instability, lack of safety, rail stock and infrastructure maintenance, state capture, infrastructure, incompetence, mismanagement and rot at the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa.”
#UniteBehind has been in court since December 2017 demanding the minister appoint a permanent board. For almost a year now, PRASA has had an interim board. In the media briefing on Thursday, Nzimande re-appointed the interim board for six more months. DM
Watch Pauli van Wyk’s Cat Play The Piano Here!
No, not really. But now that we have your attention, we wanted to tell you a little bit about what happened at SARS.
Tom Moyane and his cronies bequeathed South Africa with a R48-billion tax shortfall, as of February 2018. It's the only thing that grew under Moyane's tenure... the year before, the hole had been R30.7-billion. And to fund those shortfalls, you know who has to cough up? You - the South African taxpayer.
It was the sterling work of a team of investigative journalists, Scorpio’s Pauli van Wyk and Marianne Thamm along with our great friends at amaBhungane, that caused the SARS capturers to be finally flushed out of the system. Moyane, Makwakwa… the lot of them... gone.
But our job is not yet done. We need more readers to become Maverick Insiders, the friends who will help ensure that many more investigations will come. Contributions go directly towards growing our editorial team and ensuring that Daily Maverick and Scorpio have a sustainable future. We can’t rely on advertising and don't want to restrict access to only those who can afford a paywall subscription. Membership is about more than just contributing financially – it is about how we Defend Truth, together.
So, if you feel so inclined, and would like a way to support the cause, please join our community of Maverick Insiders.... you could view it as the opposite of a sin tax. And if you are already Maverick Insider, tell your mother, call a friend, whisper to your loved one, shout at your boss, write to a stranger, announce it on your social network. The battle for the future of South Africa is on, and you can be part of it.
Adidas will cancel any player's sponsorship deal if it turns out they have anything to do with Scientology.