Lawyer to apply for Marikana commission postponement

2012-10-01 11:13

The legal representative of 20 of the families of the miners who died on August 16 in Marikana, said he would put in an application to have the proceedings of the commission of inquiry postponed by at least 14 days to allow the families of the deceased to be present.

The judicial commission of inquiry into the deaths of 46 people during a strike of Lonmin mineworkers in Marikana got under way in Rustenburg this morning.

Advocate Dumisa Ntsebeza said earlier that his legal team had established that the relatives of the deceased had not been made aware that the commission would be sitting today.

He said he would also request the postponement to obtain a list of all police officers deployed in the Marikana area between August 9 and 16.

Ntsebeza said he wished to establish which officers were in charge and authorised the use of razor wire, bullets, teargas and rubber bullets at the time.

Advocate Ishmael Semenya, who represents the police, said such a list would be made available and that senior police officers would be invited to explain the operation.

Semenya said post-mortem results were still being awaited, which would “make it possible to work out who fired which gun and where”.

Advocate Dali Mpofu, who represents the 278 people who were injured on August 16, said the commission should clarify whether the R25 million allocated would also benefit the families of the victims.

“The search for the truth should not be compromised by a lack of resources,” said Mpofu.

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