Marikana: Nathi Mthethwa denies political pressure

By Drum Digital
14 July 2014

Former police minister Nathi Mthethwa has denied that he was put under pressure by then Lonmin shareholder Cyril Ramaphosa to act against the striking miners in Marikana.

Former police minister Nathi Mthethwa has denied that he was put under pressure by then Lonmin shareholder Cyril Ramaphosa to act against the striking miners in Marikana two years ago.

The evidence of the North West police commissioner Zukiswa Mbombo before the commission a few months ago was that she spoke to Mthethwa, who told her he was facing pressure from high up to act during the crisis that had already claimed ten lives. It is the contention of the lawyers of the victims’ families that he was put under pressure to act “concomitantly”.

Mthethwa was responding to questions from commission chair Ian Farlam and his lawyer, who was leading the former police commissioner’s evidence  at the Farlam Commission in Centurion.

“I am not sure…I have never come to that situation where somebody puts pressure on me on my job.

“Honestly, I don’t regard anybody as putting pressure on me,” he said, adding that NUM president Senzeni Zokwana and Ramaphosa had spoken to him as concerned people about what had been happening in Marikana at the time.

Mthethwa also denied that police commissioner Riah Phiyega had not told him that they were escalating to “phase three” of the police operation, which was to disarm armed strikers.

He said this was because it was not his “province” about the detailed operational plans of the police, this is even though minutes of the joint operations committee of the police show that Phiyega had said she would inform Mthethwa.

However, he conceded that there was nothing wrong with Phiyega keeping him in the loop.

Mthethwa denied that the police had a maximum force police, saying they were governed by the policing laws and policies which outline what the orientation of the police is in a democracy.

The hearing continues.

Find Love!

Men
Women