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The Minister of Transport, Fikile Mbalula on the induction of the PRASA Board of Control

 

21 November 2020

 

Chairperson of the PRASA Board of Control, Mr Leonard Ramatlakane
Members of the Board
Members of Senior Management


As you conclude your induction, and the process to familiarise yourself with the operations of PRASA, I have no doubt that you are ready to hit the ground running in the execution of your mandate.

 

The challenges facing PRASA loom large and require dedicated focus in ensuring that it is able to deliver on its mandate of moving people. I have no doubt that the calibre of this Board will go a long way in providing the necessary leadership to achieve a rapid turn-around in recovering lost ground and rebuilding requisite capacity.

 

The Shareholder Compact we are concluding today gives us focus on the critical milestones that we need to achieve over the next few months. This is building on the work that has been done since the beginning of the financial year. This compact will give the Board focus on the strategic and critical issues it needs to prioritise for the remainder of this financial year.

 

It remains a concern that the PRASA continues to receive disclaimers on its audits. This is an area that must receive priority as we continue to strengthen organisational capacity. In bolstering this capacity, the Board must immediately prioritise the recruitment of a Group Chief Executive Officer and finalise all requisite processes by year end.

 

Improving operational performance includes the recovery of the commuter service and the acceleration of the modernisation programme. These are critical tasks that must be accelerated as they are central in positioning passenger rail as the backbone of our public transport system.

 

In recent months we unveiled a Security Strategy to tackle that sabotage of the PRASA infrastructure. Our rail system continues to be a target of theft and vandalism, senseless attacks on employees and private security while on duty and sabotage. The security plan is premised on developing requisite internal capability and capacity to mitigate and combat theft and vandalism of the rail infrastructure. We must give the implementation of this plan the support and resources it requires to make a telling difference.

 

Among other priorities outlined in the Shareholder compact for the remainder of this year, we have prioritised the following:
• Implementation of Security and Asset Protection Strategy and Plan;
• Merger of PRASA CRES and Intersite;
• Divisionalisation of Autopax;
• Resolution of the locomotives acquisition from Stadler Rail;
• Ensuring the General Overhaul of the Rolling Stock; and
• Ensuring Implementation of the Presidential Directive on the roll-out of the rehabilitation of the Central Line in Cape Town and the Mabopane to Pretoria Line in Gauteng.

 

It is only through these interventions that we can re-position PRASA as a capable entity that is able to deliver on its mandate. Through our interventions, we must cushion the most vulnerable and the poor from the devastating impact of relentless criminality in the form of theft and vandalism of the public railway infrastructure.

 


I thank you

     

 



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