Farlam: Unlikely Mpembe gave shoot order

2013-08-30 12:06
Ian Farlam (City Press)

Ian Farlam (City Press)

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Pretoria - It was unlikely that North West deputy police commissioner William Mpembe ordered police to fire teargas at striking Marikana workers, the Farlam Commission of Inquiry heard on Friday.

Evidence presented at the inquiry showed it was unlikely that Mpembe gave the order on 13 August 2012, commission chairperson retired judge Ian Farlam said.

A police officer fired teargas at striking mineworkers as police escorted the miners to a hill where other miners had gathered.

The miners retaliated by attacking police, killing two and wounding one.

The two slain officers were hacked, stabbed and shot to death.

In a statement, the officer who had fired the teargas alleged he had heard an instruction to fire. No other officer reported hearing the instruction.

"If you had given the instruction, more than one person would have fired their teargas canister... and recorded it in their pocket books," said Farlam.

"It seems clear that you did not give the instruction."

Mpembe, who was testifying before the commission, agreed.

The commission, sitting in Centurion, is investigating the events that led to the deaths of 44 people during strike-related unrest at Lonmin's platinum mining operations at Marikana, near Rustenberg in North West in August last year.

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Read more on:    police  |  ian farlam  |  william mpembe  |  marikana inquiry

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