Commission hears of police reinforcements

2013-04-16 18:41
(Picture: Sapa)

(Picture: Sapa)

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Rustenburg - A total of 761 police officers were deployed to Marikana the day before the 16 August shootings last year, the Farlam Commission of Inquiry heard on Thursday.

Tim Bruinders, for workers' union AMCU, said the increase in the police numbers came shortly after national police commissioner Riah Phiyega visited Marikana.

Phiyega, currently under cross-examination at the commission's hearings in Rustenburg, denied the decision to increase the police presence was made during a meeting with North West police commissioner General Lukizwa Mbombo and Lonmin mine management.

"We did not discuss that at the meeting," she said.

The commission is investigating circumstances which led to the killing of 44 people during wage-related protest violence in North West at Lonmin's Marikana mine in August last year.

Police shot dead 34 striking workers on 16 August .

Phiyega said she and Mbombo had, outside of their meeting, continuously held discussions on increasing police numbers.

Bruinders said there were 217 police officers deployed to Marikana on 13 August, around 580 on the 14th, and 716 on the 15th.

The reinforcements were brought in from KwaMhlanga, the East Rand region, and Johannesburg.

Read more on:    lonmin  |  police  |  riah phiyega  |  mahikeng  |  marikana inquiry  |  mining unrest

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