Marikana cops in Brits shoot-out

2014-01-19 16:36
People queue to get water in Damonsville. (Alet Pretorius, Beeld)

People queue to get water in Damonsville. (Alet Pretorius, Beeld)

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Johannesburg - A few of the policemen who shot and killed striking mine workers at Marikana were part of the core team deployed to Mothutlung, Madibeng, in North West, to stop water protests, City Press reported on Sunday.

Three people died - allegedly at the hands of the police.

Seconds after members of the public order policing unit allegedly opened fire on the protesters with semi-automatic guns, two people were dead.

A third man died the next day.

City Press has learnt that residents have reported one officer – who is well known in Mothutlung as one of “the Marikana policemen” – to the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID).

Residents claim that the officer shot and killed a 62-year-old freelance photographer “in cold blood”.

Residents have identified a second “Marikana policeman” who was also on the scene in Madibeng when police opened fire on the protesters.

Police sources told the paper several members of the Rustenburg public order policing unit, who were in Marikana, confronted protesters in Mothutlung on Monday.

Tshele and another protester, Hosia Rahube, allegedly died at the hands of this unit.

The sources say a captain was in charge of the unit at Mothutlung.

But after the shooting, Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Merafe arrived to take control of his unit.

Merafe, its deputy commander, was identified at the Farlam commission of inquiry into the Marikana massacre as an “operational commander” on the day 34 mine workers died and more than 70 were injured.

The IPID will also investigate the death of protester Lerato Seema.

Police claim he tried to jump from a moving police nyala, but witnesses told the paper they saw him being thrown out of the vehicle.

IPID spokesperson Moses Dlamini told City Press the police watchdog was “working hard to expedite the investigations”.

Read more on:    mahikeng  |  marikana inquiry  |  service delivery  |  protests

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