State advocates given permission to play video footage in Mpembe’s trial

SABC News Marikana.JPG Reuters 3 1 - State advocates given permission to play video footage in Mpembe’s trial

The state advocates leading the prosecution of former Deputy Provincial Police Commissioner William Mpembe have been permitted to play video footage that relates to the death of three Lonmin mineworkers and two police officials on 13 August 2012. Mpembe, who was the overall commander of the police, is standing trial in the North West High Court in Mahikeng. He is facing four charges of murder and five of attempted murder.

A police video operator and co-ordinator from the North West Public Order Police Service in Rustenburg, Abraham Manyasa says he shot the video footage when an altercation between about two hundred striking miners and former Deputy police commissioner William Mpembe ensued. Mpembe requested striking miners to drop their dangerous weapons. They were on their way to Lonmin’s Karee Shaft.

Manyasa says Mpembe was shouting to the striking miners saying, they must stop killing police. He says during the attack on a police officer, he was not taking footage as his camera was not of a great standard. Footage taken after shows one injured miner that was handcuffed next to the lifeless body of a police officer.

He says when he got closer to one of the shacks he also saw two bodies. He was later called to the Marikana police station and instructed to hand over the video footage to a Captain Kruger. This allegedly at the instruction of Mpembe. More than 100 witnesses are expected to be subpoenaed in this trial that has been set down for three weeks.

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