Former guards might've vandalised Metrorail lines

Metrorail says police are investigating whether 90 former security guards are linked to vandalism.

Hundreds of Metrorail commuters waited on platforms at Cape Town station hoping trains will arrive. Picture: Mia Spies/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Metrorail says police are investigating whether 90 former security guards are linked to vandalism which happened last week at its station.

The rail operator has been granted a temporary court interdict against the group.

Last week, vandalism on the Phillipi line crippled the service to Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain.

Metrorail Regional Manager Richard Walker says the guards were dismissed by the security sub-contractor and are now directing their anger at Metrorail.

He says the security guards will today have a chance to oppose an interim interdict.

"We are quite confident, given the evidence and the documents we have, that the court will provide a permanent interdict."

Walker says these particular guards were tasked with escorting Metrorail's technicians, patrolling railway lines and combatting cable theft and vandalism.

Meanwhile, Transport Mayco Member Brett Herron says the severe bout of vandalism last week, the demand for the MyCiti N2 Express Service has more than doubled.

The service runs through Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain, two of the areas affected by last week's sabotaging of railway lines.

In order to provide additional capacity for commuters affected by the suspended trains, between six and eight, additional MyCiti buses were deployed to the N2 Express Route.

This equated to an additional capacity of at least 400 passengers during peak hours.

Despite Metrorail's services resuming on Monday, Herron says the extra buses will still be deployed.

"Due to last week's problems with the Metrorail service, we've also extended the deadline of issuing free My Connect cards to the residents of Mitchell's Plain and Khayelitsha until 31 August."