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Unite Behind, commuters protest at CT Prasa offices

Commuters from across Cape Town are occupying the foyer at the Prasa offices.

A protester holds a placard outside the Prasa offices in Cape Town on 17 April 2019. Picture: Kaylynn Palm/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Lobby group Unite Behind and Cape Town commuters have been protesting at the Prasa offices in the CBD.

They are demanding safe and efficient rail services.

Last week, a Zonnebloem school pupil from Gugulethu was killed after he apparently fell from a moving train while attempting to jump to another.

Commuters from across Cape Town were occupying the foyer at the Prasa offices.

They were waving flags and standing with placards which read: “Where is our rail safety plan” and “we are dying to know”.

Unite Behind said it had sent several letters to the president and to Transport Minister Blade Nzimande about train safety, but it has not yet received a response.

The organisation’s Zukie Vuka said they were also demanding that the state of commuter rail be declared a national disaster.

“The violence, delays, anxiety and fear are part of the daily struggles of the working class across the city.”

Other organisations, including Sonke Gender Justice, Reclaim the City and Equal Education, were supporting the protest.

WATCH: Protesters stop Ramaphosa from leaving after unveiling new trains

The demonstration comes about a week after President Cyril Ramaphosa unveiled the new models that form part of Prasa's modernisation programme.

After cutting the ribbon on the platform, Ramaphosa hopped onto one of the brand new trains. However, picketers blocked Ramaphosa's convoy from leaving the Cape Town train station precinct. The demonstrators from Unite Behind have been demanding to speak to Ramaphosa regarding the state of the rail service.

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