R100k reward offered for info on Cape Town train fires

The Western Cape government is offering a R100 000 reward for information that could lead to the arrest and conviction of whoever is burning trains in Cape Town.

"The R100 000 reward we are making available is our warning to these arsonists: You are being watched, you will be caught and we will not allow you to derail this province," said Dan Plato, the MEC for Community Safety in the province on Sunday.

His department is putting up the reward.

Thirty-two coaches were damaged by arson in July alone, News24 reported.   

Premier Helen Zille said the attacks were sabotaging freedom of movement, leaving a serious knock-on effect to the province's economy and productivity.

"The organised criminal elements behind these attacks must be exposed," said Zille in a statement.

Zille noted that Metrorail falls under the control of the national government, but the assistance is to bolster a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) recently signed between the Passenger Rail Agency of SA, which manages Metrorail, and the City of Cape Town.

As part of this MOA, the Western Cape government contributed R16m to improve Metrorail’s security.

The city is also training 100 extra security officers to guard trains and rail infrastructure.

Said Plato: "We urge rail passengers to report all crimes to the police and work with all law enforcement officials. Those responsible for the crimes are someone's child, someone's sibling or someone's neighbour – these are the people that need to break their silence and assist the police."

He said the information must be reported to the police.