Metrorail commuter files assault charge

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A Metrorail commuter has filed a complaint with the police after he was assaulted by ticket checkers and security guards earlier this month, he says.

Claudious Mustaff, 39, was travelling from Salt River to Wynberg on Sunday, 7 October. Trains were delayed by over an hour. When a train came at about 3pm it was full, but Mustaff says he could not wait another hour for a train so he squeezed into the Metroplus carriage, although he only had a Metro monthly ticket.

“At Claremont train station three Metrorail ticket checkers got into the carriage. They requested tickets. I showed mine but was told I was in the wrong carriage and told to go to the Metro carriage at the next station. I said I would comply with the the instruction, but went on to explain why I had ended up in the wrong carriage. To express myself I used finger gestures and this irritated the ticket checker. She told me not to point fingers at a woman.”

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He says the ticket checkers punched him.

“At Wynberg train station, I was handcuffed and dragged under the subway by one of the Sechaba security guards manning the station who joined in assaulting me,” he says.

Mustaff says his cellphone was broken.

“I did not know that travelling in the wrong carriage attracts such harsh treatment from Metrorail staff,” he says.

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He took a taxi to Hout Bay and opened a case of assault at the police station. The following day he went to the Hout Bay Health Centre for treatment for pain.

Mustaff says he came to South Africa from Malawi in 2011.

Prasa spokesperson Riana Scott said Prasa employees and contractors would be subjected to the company’s disciplinary code if they did not conform to the rules.

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Roegshana Essack, Sechaba Security human resources manager, said: “Sechaba does not allow or condone this sort of behaviour. If any of our officers are found to be involved, they will be disciplined.”

Republished from GroundUp

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