Transport Minister Blade Nzimande on Tuesday conceded to MPs that safe rail transport for the working class was low on the list of priorities for the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa), but vowed this would change.
Briefing MPs on his department's annual performance plan, Nzimande said he was trying to move with speed to appoint new "capable" boards to entities reporting to his department so critical work like ensuring safe travel for rail commuters, who often have to cram into carriages and hang outside trains to get to work, are addressed.
"I accept that we need to move with speed to appoint capable people who are going to focus on the task at hand," he said.
"I want to to be honest. One thing that struck me at Prasa was that all was prioritised except the provision of safe rail transport for the working class."
Nzimande last week announced the appointment of an interim board at Prasa to oversee executives in running operations at the embattled agency.