Golden Arrow bus robberies continue unabated
Cape Town – Golden Arrow is again come under fire over the safety of its drivers and passengers.
This after three armed men boarded a bus from Cape Town to Mitchells Plain on Monday and held up the driver and passengers, before alighting in Samora Machel. The route is the target of criminals using the same modus operandi.
A crime social media message gave the bus number as 4457 from Cape Town to The Leagues, and said one of the robbers was dressed in the uniform of a security company.
Golden Arrow spokesperson Bronwen Dyke-Beyer said the company was also aware of a message circulating about a robbery that allegedly occurred on Voortrekker Road on January 12 but that there was no evidence to corroborate it.
Commuter and activist Deon Carelse said Golden Arrow failed to protect its passengers. The Mitchells Plain route was continually targeted by criminals, he said.
“We feel completely unsafe on Golden Arrow buses and their silence is worrisome. They are failing us as their customers and compromising our safety. Two buses were robbed on the same day two weeks ago in Electric City and a Tygerberg bus with nurses, while a policeman was robbed of his gun and the criminals fled with money and personal belongings. The buses have no proper safety measures. There are no surveillance cameras or escorts on buses. The company must be held accountable.”
Numsa shop steward Ikraam Arendse said the union and management had regularly engagements on the safety of its staff.
“The commuters are paying a fee and I assume the fee not only covers the trip but also their safety. Instead of the feeble reaction from Golden Arrow to the robberies, they should have security personnel inside the buses.”
Provincial Transport and Public Works Department spokesperson Jandré Bakker said: “Passenger and driver safety is at the heart of ensuring public transport operates safely, efficiently and effectively. With regards to the safety concerns on Golden Arrow buses, we are working closely with the (company) and law enforcement stakeholders to address all safety concerns.”
Dyke-Beyer said Golden Arrow was in the final stages of concluding a contract with the City and province for a long-term dedicated bus enforcement unit. She said the initial contract was not renewed as the personnel were redeployed by the City.
“We believe the only way to curb these crimes of opportunity is for arrests and prosecutions to take place. We believe our passengers and drivers should be free from criminal threat to their safety.”