Families start burying Lonmin dead

2012-08-25 17:03

Johannesburg - Grieving South Africans have started burying the 44 victims of the Lonmin platinum mine killings, with three funerals held on Saturday, one of them in the mining town of Marikana.

Hundreds of residents and workers attended the funeral of Papi Ledingoane, 24, at a cemetery in Marikana, according to Radio 702.

He was one of the 34 shot dead when police opened fire on hundreds of workers staging a pay protest on August 16 at Lonmin, the world's third largest producer of platinum.

Another 10 - two of them policemen - died in clashes between rival unions in the week before the nation's deadliest police action since the apartheid years.

Wearing white T-shirts, some of Ledingoane's workmates acted as pall bearers at the sombre funeral where grief-stricken relatives wept and some fainted.

Senior government officials including Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi and Minister in the Presidency Collins Chabane joined the mourners.

Two other miners were buried in the Eastern Cape province, home to the majority of the victims, in the first of a series of funerals over the next few weeks.

About 3 000 rock drill operators at the Lonmin mine launched the illegal strike on August 10. It quickly degenerated into clashes with non-strikers.

In chilling scenes that evoked memories of apartheid brutality, police insist that they used teargas first and only opened fire after miners shot at them. The miners say they were armed only with spears, machetes and clubs.

Back at work

Meanwhile platinum giant Lonmin reported that nearly 60% of workers reported for duty on Saturday at one of its two sets of shafts at Marikana as it sought an accord to end the labour dispute.

"Eastern shafts are working this weekend and we have 57% attendance across these shafts. The rest of the mine is closed as this is their off-weekend," Lonmin said in a statement.

Lonmin said it would spend the weekend trying to persuade the remaining workers to return.

"It's quite good news that 57% of the workers in this section pitched up," spokesperson Sue Vey told AFP.

On Friday, Lomnin reported only about 24% of its 28 000 workforce at Marikana had signed in.

It said talks were ongoing to find a "common ground among all stakeholders".

"We continue to communicate with our employees to reassure them that we are all working together to bring resolution and we encourage them to come back to work," it added.

Workers are demanding a wage increase to R12 500, claiming they currently earn only R4 000.

But according to figures released by Lonmin on Friday, when bonuses and other allowances are included, the rock drill operators who launched the strike earn an average of R9 813 before taxes.

On Friday Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant met with union representatives in Rustenburg.

  • kim.buren - 2012-08-25 17:30


      lucy.nkomo.7 - 2012-08-25 17:49

      weaked woman god delieve you

      boltonbarry - 2012-08-25 17:58

      Apperently mr Nkomo was not so lucky with his education

      vinzent.blaschczok - 2012-08-25 18:34

      @mr nkobo. The purpose of the "comment" function is to enable people to give their (preferably well-thought out and reasoned) opinion on the comments and opinions of others and not to spew hate and racism and attack people directly. If you disagree with Kim and other people who've also given their own (non-offensive) opinions, then why not compose a decent, logical and substantiated argument which proves your point of view. Maybe then people might take note and even consider your view?

      trevor.pietersen.3 - 2012-08-25 22:51

      hope THEY gonna bury the rabbit too?

      john.barbarian.9 - 2012-08-25 22:59

      @ Trevor Pietersen Watching movies like Matrix will definitely qualify you as 'Sangoma' "Follow the White Rabbit".... I hope that no one eats nails to become "Transformer"

  • arne.verhoef - 2012-08-25 17:47

    They are not victims.

      lucy.nkomo.7 - 2012-08-25 17:48

      arner are you , your a victim shame on you

      boltonbarry - 2012-08-25 18:03

      Lucky. Stop using the internet. You don't know what you are doing.

      vinzent.blaschczok - 2012-08-25 18:46

      I agree with you (Arne) wholeheartedly. There is a negative trend in South Africa where people are entirely unwilling to accept responsibility for their own actions. I mean surely, if I provoked a dog and it bit me, nobody would have any sympathy. Instead they prefer to propagate blame and point the finger.

      john.barbarian.9 - 2012-08-25 23:31

      Excellent Comment by Arne and Vincent !!! I wonder why we always use the famous "If I provoked a dog..."? Maybe becouse of the sentimental touch of fluffy little dog. We'll never say...provoked by Lion..or..I've meet a cobra while walking in the bush. Arne...let me reveal to you some "big secret". Everyone on this earth was born exactly in the same way. If you are apologies. Probably you are God. People die in the same way also. Causes might differ, but concept is the same. Respect the good and bad moments of the life of others....they might do the same to you. The Heroes from the one side of the river are always the Enemies of the other....and vice versa. If you don't like publication, just dont read it.

  • ruan.lacock - 2012-08-25 17:54

    ....omg....Daar is ONMIN....IN LONMIN !! Hope ye ladz have learned ur lesson....NOW LETS GET BACK TO WORK !!

      lucy.nkomo.7 - 2012-08-25 17:56

      if you are irish , so my friend mind your own country peoblems , ok if you are a south african white and you are the ones who think they own the world , may god pannish then for the rest of their life , im till they will no that they are not god.

      kim.buren - 2012-08-25 18:03

      Mr Nkomo, please sh@t up

      hermann.hanekom - 2012-08-25 18:22

      @lucy.nkomo - not only are you acting like a racist, but also if you are suffering from foot and mouth disease. Rather go back to school if you can find one with books and acquaint yourself with spelling and grammar.

      john.barbarian.9 - 2012-08-25 23:59

      Shhh....Nkomo is a Witch Doctor. Interesting part of the "spell"...if you are Irish - you are cool and"'my friend". If you are white South African - may your crops die. Interesting point. Luci....Trevor Noah is albino. Is he cool?

      boltonbarry - 2012-08-26 09:46

      I think Lucy Nkomo should be charged for raping the English language

  • ken.grimblegrumble - 2012-08-25 18:02

    So anyone armed to the teeth attacking the police (attempting to repeat murder of innocent citizens) is now a VICTIM in the new ZA? That's truly sick.

  • ken.grimblegrumble - 2012-08-25 18:08

    Grieving South Africans have started burying the 44 victims of the Lonmin platinum mine killings Presumably the Sangoma was there to conduct the ceremony dressed as a rabbit.

  • lenox.ntlantsana - 2012-08-25 18:15

    RIP comrades! May your souls RIP

      ken.grimblegrumble - 2012-08-25 18:35

      Lenox are you talking about the 44 potential murderers who were stopped by the law? I doubt they would understand the concept of a soul.

      hermann.hanekom - 2012-08-25 20:44

      @lenox .... when referring to comrades are you referring to the two policemen and the two security guards that were hacked to death by the striking vermin?

  • hermann.hanekom - 2012-08-25 18:20

    And the two policemen as the other eight were silently buried without much ado. Shame on the politicians.

  • boltonbarry - 2012-08-25 18:21

    Insist my ass. You must be blind to see that they did use teargas as well as rubber bullets

  • Brad.Kopping - 2012-08-25 18:30

    I wonder where the rabbit is @ ?? xD

      kim.buren - 2012-08-25 18:48

      Eaten by now Opinionater. May it's soul rest in peace

      boltonbarry - 2012-08-25 18:53

      The rabbit got killed as is the nature of the beasts that did the killing

  • philip.mostert.14 - 2012-08-25 19:04

    Well done to the SAPS, next time they will think twice before striking!

  • philip.mostert.14 - 2012-08-25 19:08

    Must the police just stand while the strikers attack them, i think this will make people think twice before striking and costing the country money

  • ernest.lwandle - 2012-08-25 22:36


      boltonbarry - 2012-08-26 09:48

      Ernest. Yes it happen in other countries as well. Here nobody wants it to happen but unfortunately the cultural difference is to big for it not to

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