Marikana witness breaks down

2013-02-28 15:16

Bodies lay prostrate in the dust, eyes staring to the heavens in death. They lay there, their clothes splattered in blood.

Some lay facing down, pools of blood forming around their faces.

One lay facing upwards, his head ripped open, exposing his brains.

This was the scene from a video shown to the Marikana Commission of Inquiry earlier today during the testimony of Mzoxolo Magidiwana (24).

The footage was taken by police at the scene where 16 mine workers were shot dead by police in Marikana on August 16. In total, 34 people were killed that day, with another 18 shot a few hundred metres from the first scene, which was captured by television and press cameras.

In the footage, which was captured moments after the shooting, Magidiwana is seen lying in the dust, attempting to raise his hand towards a stick lying next to his body.

Magidiwana was also part of that group at the first scene. He was shot seven times, but miraculously survived. He now walks with the aid of crutches and says doctors have told him he may never be able to father any children. One of the bullets hit him in the testicles.

Seeing the scene of his colleagues’ dead bodies proved too much for Magidiwana, who was being led through his evidence by his lawyer, Advocate Dali Mpofu.

He broke down, forcing commission chairperson retired Judge Ian Farlam to adjourn the proceedings for a while.

Mpofu is arguing that Magidiwana’s group was trying to reach the informal settlement of Nkaneng where most of them lived when they were shot by police.

Police are arguing that the group was on a mission to “engage in a mortal duel” with the officers who were trying to disperse and arrest them.

The group was armed with myriad weapons, including spears, sharpened iron rods, pangas and a firearm.

The hearing continues.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. 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
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
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 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.