WATCH | Metrorail releases footage of train arson suspects, wants help finding them

Metrorail on Monday released CCTV footage of two people believed to be connected to a train fire at Cape Town station on November 28.

About R61m in damage was caused in the apparent arson attack. 

The commuter train operator has offered R100,000 reward to anyone with information about the two men suspected to be linked to the fire, and asked citizens with information to call Sgt Williams on 078 307 5969.

One of the 'persons of interest' who investigators believe is linked to the train fires at Cape Town station on November 28.
One of the 'persons of interest' who investigators believe is linked to the train fires at Cape Town station on November 28.
Image: Metrorail

The footage shows two young men, one of whom is covering his face with a piece of cloth, skulking around a train before entering a carriage with a bottle containing a clear liquid.

The men then emerge from the carriage and run out of view of the cameras before the footage cuts off.

Transport minister Fikile Mbalula called the arson attack unprecedented, after 18 carriages were destroyed in the early-morning fire. 

"Prasa (Metrorail) Protection Services and specialist investigators continue to work hand in hand with SAPS in the investigation into the recent train fires at Cape Town station," read a Metrorail statement released on Sunday.

Metrorail is offering a R100,000 reward for information on 'persons of interest' linked to the train fires at Cape Town station on November 28.
Metrorail is offering a R100,000 reward for information on 'persons of interest' linked to the train fires at Cape Town station on November 28.
Image: Metrorail

"The investigation is progressing well and fresh images have been released to encourage more people to contact the investigating officer with information about several persons of interest who police believe can assist them in their investigation," it read. 

The incident dealt another devastating blow to South Africa's already crippled commuter train service, which has lost 213 coaches worth R643m to arson attacks since 2014. 

Metrorail Western Cape regional manager Richard Walker said in the statement that it was "heartbreaking to see communities so dependent on affordable public transport being robbed of mobility shortly before the year-end festivities".

"Breadwinners working hard to ensure their families are provided for during the upcoming festive time and saving for school expenses next year are forced to spend much-needed money on transport rather than on their loved ones," said Walker.

"I support minister Mbalula’s assertion that the perpetrators of these heinous crimes against the state live and socialise among us, and should be exposed for what they are in the interest of rail transport and South African taxpayers, who ultimately foot the bill for huge losses," he said.

Only 10 of Cape Town station's 24 platforms are operable following repeated arson attacks over the past four years.


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