‘Families still waiting for Ramaphosa to apologise for Marikana tragedy’

SABC News Marikana 1 - ‘Families still waiting for Ramaphosa to apologise for Marikana tragedy’

The Association for Mining and Construction Union (Amcu) President Joseph Mathunjwa says they are still waiting on president Cyril Ramaphosa to come and apologise to the injured workers and widows of those killed during the Marikana tragedy in 2012. Mathunjwa was speaking during an exclusive interview with SABC News, ahead of the eighth anniversary of the Marikana tragedy.

Ramaphosa has previously made a commitment to visit Marikana.

Since the shooting and killing of 34 mineworkers in Marikana by heavily armed police, the union has been hosting the commemoration at the koppie, where the incident happened. However, 2020’s commemoration will be the first one hosted outside Marikana. The commemoration will take place in Johannesburg.

Sunay marks the eighth anniversary of the Marikana massacre: 

The leadership of Amcu says very little has changed in the eight years since the incident.

Mathunjwa says they are hopeful that Ramaphosa will keep his promises to visit Marikana.

“He promised the nation that he will come and we said fine we will welcome him. We will take him through the processes because it is not only the widows and the workers that were injured; even the workers in general that were traumatised and the nation at large. But this has not happened; we don’t know why he is delaying this process. We are still waiting; he is still the president of the country for that matter. He does have all the resources. So we’ve been waiting we still waiting maybe the time will come.”

Mathunjwa says even the Marikana Commission of Enquiry led, by retired Judge Ian Farlam, which was meant to probe the tragedy, was just a useless exercises.

“If the commission was to be conducted by the state of which the state was involved with the capital, so the outcome and the recommendations might not be objective. As you see today, justice has not been served. But all over the world, most of the commissions they don’t result in arrests of any person or any perpetrator; it’s becoming just a PR exercise at the end of the day.”

Those that survived the fatal shooting are still calling for justice to prevail.

“There is no one who has been arrested so far. Even the IPID is busy with some cases, but there is no progress. We’ve seen few people arrested, but it’s not the main culprits. We need people like Nathi Mthethwa, they are not there,” says one of the strike leaders Xolani Nzuza.

Mzoxolo Magidiwana, who survived after been shot seven times, still has hope that justice will be served.

“Everything that happened to us, one day it will be cleared by the court of law because the Farlam Commission which was established was not meant for us. It was meant for them to hide the bad things that they did to us black people.”

Zamaka Nongu, one of the widows whose husband was killed during the massacre, says they are still waiting for government to come and talk to them.

“I am really hurting as we are sitting here at home with our children, there is no progress. Even our government has never come to talk to us about what happened; since they say they will come. It’s been eight years now nothing has happened.”

Amcu says this 2020’s commemoration will be in the form of a small physical gathering in order to comply with lockdown regulations.

Remembering the Marikana massacre eight years on: 

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