Min­is­ter: Prasa’s bro­ken


The Citizen (KZN) - - News - Sipho Mabena

Can­cel­la­tion of se­cu­rity con­tracts gives metal thieves free run of de­pots.

The Pas­sen­ger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) is a “bro­ken en­tity”, Min­is­ter of Trans­port Fik­ile Mbalula said af­ter ditch­ing the war room es­tab­lished to pull the agency out of the abyss, and as a newly ap­pointed ad­min­is­tra­tor lays bare the ex­tent of the rot.

“Prasa has suf­fered blows for many years of mis­man­age­ment and de­te­ri­o­rat­ing co­op­er­ate gov­er­nance. To­day it is [a] bro­ken or­gan­i­sa­tion ... strug­gling to pro­vide an ef­fi­cient com­muter and pas­sen­ger rail service.”

Speak­ing in Jo­han­nes­burg yes­ter­day, the min­is­ter said nu­mer­ous boards had failed to save Prasa.

He said in­stead of a board, he had ap­pointed an ad­min­is­tra­tor, Bongi­sizwe Mpondo, who will re­port to him ev­ery month.

Mpondo has es­tab­lished so far that Prasa has been rav­aged by sys­temic ero­sion of value and is char­ac­terised by dis­or­der, with “count­less changes” at chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer and board level since 2015, cul­mi­nat­ing in an in­terim board last year.

Mpondo said these changes were, by de­sign, a key en­abler for in­sta­bil­ity and that Prasa was a fer­tile ground for crooks.

“Ques­tion­able de­ci­sions have been taken by lead­er­ship, with dis­as­trous con­se­quences.

“One telling ex­am­ple is that to­wards the end of last year, the in­terim board can­celled the se­cu­rity con­tracts with­out a

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