Marikana evidence points to police ‘cover up’ attempt

2012-11-05 13:20

Evidence presented before the Marikana Commission of Inquiry this afternoon points to “a deliberate attempt to defeat the ends of justice”.

This was the submission made by human rights lawyer George Bizos SC, shortly after the commission was shown evidence of contrasting photographs of bodies lying between rocks and in the open veld.

A police video shot during the day and photographs taken at around the same time at scene two, known as Klein Koppie, show bloodied bodies lying without any weapons next to them.

However, in photographs taken by forensic crime expert Captain Apollo Jeremiah Mohlaki after sunset, the pictures of the same bodies appear with a myriad of traditional weapons next to them.

Mohlaki said he had taken the pictures after dusk, while the other pictures, also taken by police, were taken shortly after the shooting in the afternoon.

Bizos, who is representing the Legal Resources Centre in the commission, slammed the evidence.

“The evidence that we have seen this afternoon shows clearly that there is a strong prima facie case that there was a deliberate attempt to defeat the ends of justice shortly after the event. Changing the evidence is a very serious offence,” said Bizos.

He said police commissioner Riah Phiyega had not been an impartial observer in the events, after it was revealed by Ishmael Semenya SC that she had instituted an investigation into the events of August 16.

Bizos said the commission should, as a matter of urgency, make a call to produce as witnesses those who were in charge of this scene and who could have falsified the facts that the commission is looking into.

“This came as a great surprise to us. This is why, with the greatest respect, we can’t leave it for the matter to be investigated by the commissioner of police.

“Who was the most senior officer who took responsibility for the scene at Klein Koppie before and after the shooting?” asked Bizos.

The commission continues.

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