Excessive force used in Marikana - expert

2014-06-25 19:21
Miners Shot Down (YouTube)

Miners Shot Down (YouTube)

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

Pretoria - Police use excessive force during the deadly strike in Marikana, North West, the Farlam Commission of Inquiry heard on Wednesday.

"The reason police should fire is to stop the threat. It's not about killing someone," public order policing expert Gary White said.

Police fired 327 live rounds of ammunition at striking Lonmin miners on 16 August 2012. White said he watched the video of the shooting but could not see what police were shooting at as there was smoke.

"If you can't see what you are firing at, what's the point of shooting?"

He said in a number of police statements there was no explanation of what officers were firing at.

White said he was aware there was evidence of shots being fired at police, but they could have run away.

The law was clear, lethal fire should be used as last resort, he said.

White criticised police for not having a written plan to deal with strikers in Marikana.

Earlier he testified about a confrontation police had with strikers carrying traditional weapons near a railway line at Marikana on 13 August 2012. Two policemen were killed and one was wounded after strikers refused to disarm.

"If the intention was to disarm and disperse, the operation needed to be planned," White said.

If the strikers were carrying traditional weapons, he suspected they would not voluntarily put them down.

White said there was no plan as to how the crowd should be disarmed and dispersed. There was also no plan about what to do if the strikers refused to disarm.

White said he was shocked police had so little information.

"I would have expected that there was intelligence to tell who the group was and their intention... how likely they were going to be violent towards the police," he said.

The commission is investigating the deaths of 44 people during strike-related violence at Lonmin's platinum mining operations in Marikana.

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 two security guards, were killed.

- SAPA
Read more on:    police  |  pretoria  |  marikana inquiry
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
38 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.