Prasa moves to secure service

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Prasa network is porous and needs protection. This will be increased when the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa brings 3 000 security guards on board.

These will all be insourced.

Prasa spokesperson Makhosini Mgitywa says that the security guards will work with other security resources, which will include: e-guarding, face recognition technology, and infrared security cameras amongst others.

He says that the tenders to acquire these resources have been opened for applications.

Prasa is taking these measures as Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula has announced plans to do away with private security companies at the parastatal.

The Public Protector’s report of 2015 found that several security companies’ contracts with Prasa had been irregular. Mgitywa says that some companies were more protected than the parastatal was…

“If you’re given a portion of network to guard and that network gets vandalised anyway, you’d still get paid as a security company as if there’s nothing wrong.”

Mgitywa says that the poor protection of Prasa infrastructure has cost the parastatal dearly:

“The three years up to 2019, Prasa had lost infrastructure worth R 1bn, with those security companies in place.”

He says that this why some contracts had been cancelled, and others have not been renewed.

This decision is reportedly behind the tensions brewing within the ANC’s ranks. Minister Mbalula has been targeted by members of the Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans who accuse him failing to protect the country’s transport infrastructure.

But he maintains that some Veterans have links to the security companies that had failed to do their jobs on Prasa’s networks.

 

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October 27, 2021
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