15 August 2018

South Africa: The Legacy of Marikana - Accountability Urgent to Prevent Another Atrocity

analysis

There must be justice for Marikana. The families of the victims deserve no less than a full accounting of the events of 16 August. To ensure the events of Marikana are never repeated, SAPS and the individual role players involved must fully accept responsibility or be held accountable for the lives they took.

Six years ago, the nation watched in shock as police opened fire with live ammunition at striking miners in the worst example of police abuse of force in post-apartheid history. In the preceding week, miners employed at Lonmin Marikana Shaft had been striking for higher wages and 10 people, including two police officers, had died in confrontations related to the strike.

For four days, 3,000 miners sat atop a rocky outcrop just outside the Lonmin shaft compound refusing to move until their demand that Lonmin management address them was met. As the strike drew national attention and an increasing police presence, Lonmin officials continued to refuse to engage with the striking workers instead choosing to use police...

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