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R5 000 reward, hunt for gunmen who shot Prasa workers

Efforts to return the crucial Central Line to operation hit a snag after contract workers were shot and wounded during an alleged cable theft attempt. Picture: Armand Hough / African News Agency (ANA)

Efforts to return the crucial Central Line to operation hit a snag after contract workers were shot and wounded during an alleged cable theft attempt. Picture: Armand Hough / African News Agency (ANA)

Published Jun 8, 2022

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The City of Cape Town has offered a R5 000 reward for information on the shooting of workers ambushed along Metrorail’s Central Line.

Two contractors were shot and wounded while repairing cables near Kalksteenfontein on Tuesday morning.

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The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) said the two injured contractors were in hospital and the motive for the attack was cable theft.

PRASA also said the two gunmen in a black VW Polo vehicle fired 10 shots at workers carrying out recovery work on the Central Line.

Parts of the Central Line have not been operating for more than two years due to vandalism, cable theft, arson and deterioration of infrastructure.

It was identified as part of the national presidential priority projects for expeditious recovery.

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula promised that the line would be re-opened by the end of 2022.

Police are still looking for the gunmen.

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Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis said: " I want to make it clear that the City of Cape Town will not tolerate this kind of criminality. We cannot continue to live in a society in which the lives of those performing essential public service are threatened by gangsters and criminals.“

Tens of thousands of people rely on Metrorail trains as the service was more affordable compared to other forms of public transport in the metro.

"We cannot allow the majority to suffer because of the appalling behaviour of a few and this is why we are offering a reward of R5 000 to anyone that can supply us with information that leads to the arrest of the two perpetrators,“ said Hill-Lewis.

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PRASA commended the “bravery” of the workers who defended the copper cables.

“We have confidence that the assailants will be caught and brought to book,” said Prasa in a statement.

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