Marikana letter of demand sent to Zuma

2015-05-25 18:41
President Jacob Zuma faces a lawsuit from angry miners
Picture: GCIS

President Jacob Zuma faces a lawsuit from angry miners Picture: GCIS

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

Johannesburg - The lawyer representing mineworkers who were injured and arrested during the Marikana shooting has sent a letter to President Jacob Zuma on behalf of his clients demanding that he release the Farlam Commission of Inquiry's report into the incident.

They had initially set a deadline for 14:00 on Sunday for Zuma to say when he would release the report.

That deadline had now passed.

Presidency spokesperson Harold Maloka would not comment on the deadline, saying the president had already committed himself to releasing the report and would do so in due course.

Lawyer Andries Nkome said if the president did not respond they would have no option but to approach the courts.

In the letter of demand to Zuma dated May 22, and seen by News24, Nkome wrote: "As instructed by our clients, we hereby make an urgent request/demand for you to take all the necessary steps which will result in the immediate release of the Marikana Commission report as soon as possible after receipt of this letter of demand and preferably by no later than 31 May 2015."

In the letter he points out that commission chairperson, retired Judge Ian Farlam, handed over the report to Zuma on March 31, more than 50 days ago.

'Irrational, unreasonable and unlawful'

The presidency has said that Zuma was still considering the report which made serious recommendations and would release it in due course.

Nkome, in the letter, said these were "vague and embarrassing" statements which did not take the matter forward.

"Our clients are of the firm view that your aforesaid decision and the reasons given are in the circumstances irrational, unreasonable and unlawful..."

According to the letter, the group of about 300 mineworkers felt that the "unreasonable long passage of time" the president had taken to study the report was a source of stress and anxiety for the affected parties.

"Our clients' constitutional rights, including their right to life, dignity, freedom and security of the person, to receive information and to access the courts as respectively enshrined in sections 10, 11, 12, 16 and 34 of the Constitution, are detrimentally affected and violated by your decision," Nkome told Zuma in the letter.

He said his clients were also aware that North West police commissioner Zukiswa Mbombo, who was at the helm on the day 34 mineworkers were shot dead, had resigned.

Last month, City Press reported that the commission's report recommended that Mbombo be rapped over the knuckles, along with national commissioner Riah Phiyega, for the orders that were given to police.

"Our clients are of the firm view that her imminent departure is largely motivated, in whole or in part, by a deliberate desire to escape obvious consequences of her criminals and/or otherwise unlawful conduct in connection with the Marikana massacre and not at all unrelated to the desire to leave before the report is released," Nkome said in the letter.

'False statements'

Earlier on Monday, Zuma dismissed as "false" comments by Nkome linking the presidency to Mbombo's retirement.

"The presidency rejects the false statements made by Marikana defence attorney, Andries Nkome... in relation to the provincial and national police commissioners," Maloka said in a statement.

"The president does not manage the careers of provincial police commissioners and as such has nothing to do with the reported retirement."

In his letter to Zuma, Nkome said there had also been reports that Phiyega had been offered a diplomatic post.

"In any event, the undue delay undermines two of the important stated objectives of the commission, namely bringing closure to the victims and ensuring accountability on the part of those found to be causally connected to the massacre and its consequences.

"Justice delayed is justice denied," he said.

Read more on:    jacob zuma  |  johannesburg  |  marikana commission

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.
NEXT ON NEWS24X 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.