Three men arrested for Marikana murders

By Drum Digital
18 December 2013

Three men have been arrested for three murders linked to violence at mines in Marikana.

Three men have been arrested for three murders linked to violence at mines in Marikana, the North West premier's office said on Wednesday. A 25-year old man was arrested and appeared in court on Tuesday in connection with the murder of two National Union of Mineworker (NUM) leaders, premier Thandi Modise's spokesman Lesiba Moses Kgwele said in a statement. The man remained in police custody pending appearances in the Rustenburg and Ga-Rankuwa magistrate's courts on Monday and Tuesday. In November, former NUM shop steward Percy Letanang was shot seven times at his home in Segwaelane, outside Marikana. In August, a female NUM shop steward was murdered outside her home near the NUM's offices at the Western Platinum division. Two men were also been arrested for the shooting of a man at a tavern in Wonderkop on December 6. At the time of the shooting, the gunman, who was apparently a Lonmin employee, was wearing an Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) shirt, Captain Pelonomi Makau said in the statement.

The gunman fled, but was arrested at the weekend at the Wonderkop Hostel after a shooting during an armed robbery. The shots missed the victim. When police arrived on the scene, the man pointed his firearm at them. He was arrested and was linked to the tavern killing. An accomplice of his was also arrested. They faced charges of attempted murder, possession of an unlicensed firearm and pointing of a firearm, said Makau.

They were denied bail by the Marikana Periodical Court on Friday.

The NUM recently lost its status as the majority union at Lonmin to Amcu.

Several killings of union members are believed to be the result of rivalry between the unions.

"We welcome the breakthroughs, commend police for the arrests which indicate their determination to get to the bottom of the spate of violence and killings in order to unmask and remove perpetrators of violence from society," said Modise.

She said more arrests were possible.

-by Sapa

Find Love!