Lonmin shooting records altered, inquiry hears

2014-07-29 14:05
(Picture: AFP)

(Picture: AFP)

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


Pretoria - Reference to Lonmin security guards firing rubber bullets during a scuffle between striking miners in Marikana in August 2012 was removed from a logbook, the Farlam Commission of Inquiry heard on Tuesday.

"Who is responsible for editing the Lonmin OB [occurrence book], deleting certain references to rubber rounds fired by Lonmin people and then putting before us an OB which is censored?" inquiry chairperson retired Judge Ian Farlam asked.

Lonmin security risk manager Dirk Botes was being questioned at the inquiry's public hearings in Pretoria about discrepancies in the occurrence logbooks.

Evidence leader Matthew Chaskalson said according to one of the versions Lonmin guards fired rubber rounds when striking miners approached National Union of Mineworkers members on 11 August 2012.

Chaskalson asked if Botes knew why an entry about the shooting was removed from Lonmin's version given to the inquiry.

Botes replied: "I wasn't there at the site, but the [Lonmin] versions we have here are totally different. The log sheet I have was compiled in the Lonmin JOC [security joint operations centre] while I was in the SAPS [SA Police Service] JOC.

"The people here [in the Lonmin JOC] reported to Graeme Sinclair and he has to account and explain why the shooting was removed at the time, or afterwards."

Sinclair is Lonmin's head of security.

Botes could not say why the occurrence books where altered.

"The person who compiled the log sheets reported to Graeme. I was not in charge of the log sheets and the operators who compiled them," he said.


Chaskalson said evidence showed the alterations were made after 27 August 2012.

Farlam said: "This concerns us, because after the 27th of August, someone deleted the entry of the firing of eight rubber rounds. We want to know who that person is, and why."

Chaskalson said other entries had been removed from the Lonmin occurrence logbooks.

"If you compare exhibit XX2.10, with the document on the screen, you will find that two items written in red have been removed. In fact, if you do an overall comparison of the two documents, you find that all evidence of Lonmin shooting at the strikers appears to have been removed from the log given to us by Lonmin. We want help on that," said Chaskalson.

He said other Lonmin witnesses would be questioned on the matter.

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 two Lonmin security guards - Hassan Fundi and Frans Mabelani - were killed.

Fundi and Mabelani were killed on 12 August.


Read more on:    lonmin  |  police  |  ian farlam  |  pretoria  |  marikana inquiry

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
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

/Oscar Pistorius

6 life hacks you simply have to know

A few simple tricks can make your life so much easier!


For chic geeks...

Device lets disabled people talk through their nose
It’s THIS easy for someone to steal your ATM pin!
This is why you should install iOS 8
17 photo illusions that look so real

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Pre-order your iPhone 6 at kalahari.com

Hurry and pre-order your own iPhone 6 now at SA’s favourite online store!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

Mind blow low prices on electronics

Get either the Prestigio multiphone or Proline tablet 7” tablet for only R699. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off Barbie toys

Save 30% on all Barbie toys and accessories. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Baby extravanganza month at kalahari.com

Celebrate baby month with a wide range of awesome baby products. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop 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


You may take extra pride in your work today. You have a need to shine and be respected so you may put the extra effort and TLC...read more

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


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.


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.