Attempt to hide Marikana footage, inquiry told

2014-07-29 19:44
(Picture: Sapa)

(Picture: Sapa)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Pretoria - There was an attempt to hide an incident where Lonmin security guards shot rubber bullets at striking Marikana miners, from the Farlam Commission of Inquiry, an evidence leader said on Tuesday.

"My first concern is that there appears to be a deliberate attempt to hide the fact from this commission that the Lonmin security fired rubber bullets at the NUM [National Union of Mineworkers] offices on 11 August 2012," Matthew Chaskalson said at the inquiry's hearings in Pretoria.

He was cross-examining Lonmin security risk manager Dirk Botes about discrepancies in the events recorded in occurrence logbooks.

Botes said security guards who testified at the inquiry should have been asked about the firing of rubber bullets.

Commission chairperson retired Judge Ian Farlam said there were discrepancies in the versions presented by mining company Lonmin which needed explaining.

"What was concealed from the commission is that there was a full version of the Lonmin OB [occurrence book] which was not put before us.

"We were given an abbreviated one, with that entry [of the 11 August 2012 shooting] and other entries deleted from it. Those are matters, presumably, that will be explained in due course," said Farlam.

Chaskalson said it was strange that Lonmin did not have video footage of the violence at NUM's offices.

Shots were fired during the altercation between protesting miners and NUM officials at the NUM's office at the mine. Several protesters were wounded.

"My other concern is that we have no footage of this event. This is very difficult to understand. We know that that scene where the clash took place is directly in the view of camera 218," said Chaskalson.

"We have footage of that very same position on the following day as an exhibit. We know that the camera is movement operated. It's hard to imagine that a crowd of protesters turned to the NUM offices would not have been picked by the camera."

Botes said he did not know why Frans Mabelani, a Lonmin security guard killed along with his colleague Hassan Fundi while trying to stop the protesters, did not tell Lonmin control room operators to focus surveillance cameras at the protesters.

"He [Mabelani] should have shared that information to his operators that reported to him. He would have tasked them to make use of all cameras to monitor the situation. That didn't happen because there is no footage," said Botes.

"If there is no footage, then obviously the operator did not use the camera to view that specific area."

Cameras

Farlam said he expected a reasonably alert operator to have turned on cameras to focus on the marching protesters.

"If there was a crowd of approximately 2 000 protesters and if they got to 50m of the NUM offices and there was a reasonably alert operator I would have expected him to pick that up.

"I want to hear why there is no footage about that [incident], if there is a satisfactory explanation," said Farlam.

Botes said he could not explain. Farlam said it was odd. Botes agreed. He said he was not aware if Lonmin took any disciplinary measures regarding the camera operators.

The commission is investigating the deaths of 44 people during strike-related violence at Lonmin's platinum mining operations at Marikana, near Rustenburg, North West, in August 2012.

Thirty-four people, mostly striking mineworkers, were shot dead in a clash with police, over 70 were wounded, and another 250 arrested on 16 August 2012. Police were apparently trying to disarm and disperse them.

In the preceding week, 10 people, including two policemen and the two security guards, were killed.

 

- SAPA
Read more on:    lonmin  |  pretoria  |  marikana inquiry
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
4 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Joburg hot spots for cocktails, craft beer, tapas and wine!

It’s the season to be jolly – so we’ve rounded up some new Joburg hot spots!

 
 

I love summer.24

Christmas lingerie to make this festive season the best one ever!
13 things you might not know about Disneyland
The craziest deaths of 2014
How to make this a sensual, sexy summer!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There is so much going on around you and inside your head. You may want to take your ideas to the next level. Romance may be...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.