Cyril Ramaphosa’s train campaign highlights the worst of South Africa’s transport system

metrorail cape town station

South Africa’s public rail system is in crisis. Commuters know this, and endure its plethora of problems daily. But one important citizen who experienced this first hand was the President.

President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday embarked on a train-powered election campaign across Pretoria. Sounds simple enough, but it was far from smooth.

The train took off at 6.40am, but arrived nearly four hours later.

And once he boarded, the train halted at a number of stations, effectively stranding South Africa’s leader.

On Twitter, the hashtag #PresidentStuckOnATrain began trending on Monday, largely thanks to the below tweet, as citizens discussed the President’s journey.

Snark was a popular flavour, with many criticising President Ramaphosa for not understanding his country’s ground-level issues.

General snark was a popular flavour too.

Pictures of the President against the backdrop of frustrated commuters was another theme of the day.

Notably, PRASA — the operator of Metrorail trains in South Africa — also had its share of the limelight on Twitter. It continues to trend alongside #Ramaphosa at the time of writing.

Several of the government-owned enterprise’s executives have been put on special leave after allegations of corruption and improper conduct came to light this month.

Feature image: Memeburn

Andy Walker
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