Marikana: Government failed our people – Mosiuoa Lekota

2014-08-16 13:05

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Government has failed the people of Marikana, Cope leader Mosiuoa Lekota has said.

“I am disappointed the government failed our people. We know who were the commanders of the police on August 16 2012,” he said today, referring to the day when police opened fire on striking mine workers, killing 34.

Ten others including two policemen and two Lonmin security guards were killed in the preceding week.

“It is known who were the commanders and who issued guns to the police,” he said.

Lekota said government officials should have called the police commander and found out instead of establishing a commission.

“The money should have been used to build houses and reconstruct their lives.

“Lonmin should have engaged with government on how to improve the salary of these workers.”

He said the living conditions of mineworkers had deteriorated in the last two years.

“It is worse.”

Lekota was speaking on the sidelines of the commemoration rally in Wonderkop, outside Rustenburg in the North West, which marked the second anniversary of the Marikana shooting.

“Why did the government shoot the people?,” he asked.

“If it was the apartheid government, we can understand, but this a government elected by the people.

“This is not the freedom we went into exile for. This is a completely different government. It responded by force when the people made demands.”

Lekota said South Africans should reflect on the leadership of the country.

Earlier, DA parliamentary leader Mmusi Maimane said nothing had changed in Marikana.

“The living conditions of mineworkers has not changed two years later,” he told Sapa when he arrived at the Nkaneng informal settlement in Wonderkop.

Maimane said he would talk about the conflict of interest involving mining houses and politicians.

“Politicians have shares in mines and as such, fail to hold them accountable.”

He said mine workers were killed while demanding a better wage to better their lives.

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