Marikana on edge after miner shot dead

2014-07-23 11:24
Marikana protesters (AFP)

Marikana protesters (AFP)

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

Pretoria - Mineworkers in Marikana, North West, fear for their lives after a colleague was shot dead in the area, the Farlam Commission of Inquiry heard on Wednesday.

Bongani "Bhayi" Mehlonkomo was killed in Marikana on Tuesday.

The 38-year-old was walking home on Tuesday afternoon when occupants of a car opened fire and killed him, Colonel Sabata Mokgwabone said.

"The incident happened at around 16:30. He was near a playground when he was shot by occupants in a vehicle."

His attackers fled the scene. A case of murder had been opened.

Petrified

Dali Mpofu SC, for miners arrested and wounded during strike-related violence in Marikana in August 2012, told the commission his clients were petrified.

"There is growing concern among the people that I represent. Speculation in the community is that the assassination is connected to the mentioning of names by Mr X," Mpofu told the inquiry in Pretoria.

"Their fear is that those who have been implicated falsely feel that their lives are under threat. They are not under protection and are vulnerable."

Police witness "Mr X" may not be identified and is testifying via a remote video link from an undisclosed location. He is under witness protection.

Mentioned by Mr X

Mpofu said Mr X had mentioned Bhayi repeatedly at the inquiry, implicating him in the August 2012 murders of police officers and Lonmin security guards.

Bhayi was a member of the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union.

Under cross-examination last week, Mr X was asked by Takalani Masevhe, for the family of slain Warrant Officer Tsietsi Monene, to name the person who shot the policeman at close range.

After much hesitation, Mr X said those responsible were a protester Tholakele, popularly known as "Bhele", and Bongani, popularly known as "Bhayi". He said he did not know their surnames.

"I want to apologise because these men said I should not mention their names. I communicate with the men of Marikana. They must tell the truth," said Mr X.

Monene was one of two officers hacked and shot dead on 13 August 2012 after police clashed with protesting miners.

Other murders

Last year, commission chairperson, retired judge Ian Farlam, offered the commission's condolences following the murder of National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) branch chairperson William Setelele. He was shot dead near the Marikana hill close to Lonmin's platinum mine.

Another NUM official, Daluvuyo Bongo, was killed in October 2012.

The NUM branch secretary was shot six times at his home at the Wonderkop hostel complex in Marikana on October 5. He was scheduled to testify at the commission's public hearings.

At the time of Bongo's death, the NUM said he was set to present key information to the commission.

The inquiry is investigating the deaths of 44 people during strike-related unrest at Lonmin's operations at Marikana, near Rustenburg, in August 2012.

Thirty-four people, mostly striking mineworkers, were shot dead by police apparently trying to disarm and disperse them on 16 August 2012. Seventy others were wounded and 250 arrested.

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


- SAPA
Read more on:    dali mpofu  |  mahikeng  |  marikana inquiry  |  crime
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
36 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.