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Miners Shot Down: Watch the Award-winning Marikana Documentary Online, Free this Week

 

MarikanaReporting from the FrontlineMarikanaThe long-awaited release of The Marikana Commission of Inquiry (Commission)’s Marikana Report, read by President Jacob Zuma last week, was effective in only one thing: Opening up festering wounds of indignation, despair and anger.

The report of the investigation into one of the most tragic days in recent South African history – the Marikana massacre, which occurred on 16 August 2012 – reignited countrywide debates calling for justice not only for those who lost their lives that day, but also the ones left behind with no real consolation.

For more on what happened on that tragic day consult Reporting from the Frontline: Untold Stories from Marikana by Gia Nicolaides and Marikana: A view from the mountain and a case to answer by Peter Alexander, Thapelo Lekgowa, Botsang Mmope, Luke Sinwell and Bongani Xezwi.

To focus attention on the injustice of it all, the documentary Miners Shot Down will be available for free online viewing for the next week, offering even more people the opportunity to see the award-winning exposé on what happened that day.

Follow the link to watch the documentary and share as wide as possible:

Read Zuma’s statement at the release of the Marikana report:

Fellow South Africans,

On 26 August 2012, I appointed a Commission of Inquiry to investigate matters of public, national and international concern arising out of the tragic incidents at the Lonmin Mine in Marikana, Rustenburg in the North West province, during 11 to 16 August 2012.

About 44 people lost their lives and many others were injured.

The Commission was chaired by Retired Judge Ian Farlam, assisted by Advocates PD Hemraj SC and BR Tokota SC. I wish to express my sincere gratitude and appreciation to them for the professional, efficient and effective manner in which they conducted the Commission.

I also thank the families of all the persons who lost their lives, both those who died before and during 16 August 2012, for their cooperation with the Commission despite being in pain and immense difficulties, because of the tragic loss of their loved ones.

Our hearts also go out to the families of those persons who were killed after 16 August 2012 whose murders fell outside the scope of the inquiry.
We also thank the witnesses, legal teams and injured workers. The participation of all ensured the success of the Commission.

Read a press release by the Marikana Support Campaign following the report:

The long awaited report of the Farlam Commission has been released. Despite an understanding that lawyers of the families of those slain on 16 August 2012 would be given 48 hours notice to prepare, distressingly this did not happen. This behavior showed no regard for the victims, many of whom attended the commission day after day and have anticipated this day for almost three years.

Following a cursory reading of the report, the ‘executive summary’ read out by President Zuma missed out at least two important recommendations of the report. These are that,

1/ Lonmin be investigated by the NPA for urging workers to break the strike despite violence during the dispute.
2/ NUM be investigated by the NPA for the shooting of strikers on the 12th.

Investigations by the NPA

The overall tone of the report heavily leans towards a vilification of the strikers. This is followed by a recommendation that scores of miners be investigated.

While we cannot have a quarrel that the hundred plus police who discharged their weapons be investigated, the prospect of this investigation making any headway given the huge scale of this process is highly unlikely. The issue of individual culpability at scene 1 will be dealt with at the coming press conference.

Recommendations

After 300 days of the commission sitting, the fact that recommendations have been made for further inquiries to take place into the fitness to hold office of the National Police Commissioner, Riah Phiyega and former Provincial Police Commissioner, General Mbombo, is wasteful and unreasonable. Sufficient evidence was presented before the commission to determine that both these senior police commissioners are bloody-minded, acted in collusion with Lonmin and are incompetent and therefore not fit to hold office.

The exoneration of Cyril Ramaphosa, Nathi Mthwetha, Susan Shabangu and the entire executive is perhaps the most shocking finding of all. In terms of Ramaphosa this is nothing short of a whitewash. Clear evidence was presented at the commission that he colluded with both ministers, and through them, the executive, to break the strike. Not to acknowledge that he, as a Lonmin board member and shareholder, used his seniority in the ANC to motivate for use of deadly force by the state to break a strike that was crippling the mine while breaking the political hegemony of NUM, is the most unforgiving element of the report.

By vilifying the strikers who were simply seeking to enter into a dialogue with their employers, the Marikana Report has inflicted a deep and dangerous wound on our young democracy. Instead of facilitating healing, the report has poured salt on the psychic wounds of the families of the slain miners. It not only fails to acknowledge the shocking act of violence unleashed upon the strikers, it also fails to recommend compensation for those who have been left without a breadwinner.

The Marikana Support Campaign, together with affiliate organisations and supporters inside the trade union movement, will not allow the lives lost in Marikana to be in vain. We owe it them, their families, the injured and arrested and perhaps most importantly to the democracy that so many sacrificed their lives to achieve.

Book details

  • Marikana: A view from the mountain and a case to answer by Peter Alexander, Thapelo Lekgowa, Botsang Mmope, Luke Sinwell and Bongani Xezwi
    EAN: 9781431407330
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!
  • Marikana: A view from the mountain and a case to answer by Peter Alexander, Thapelo Lekgowa, Botsang Mmope, Luke Sinwell, Bongani Xezwi
    EAN: 9781431407330
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!