NGO welcomes Radebe decision

2012-10-29 17:15

Johannesburg - An NGO has welcomed Justice Minister Jeff Radebe's call on the Farlam Commission to fund slain Marikana mineworkers' relatives' costs to attend hearings in Rustenburg.

The justice department had caused the families distress with a statement on Saturday that it would pull their funding to attend the hearings, the Council for the Advancement of the SA Constitution's chairperson, Sipho Pityana, said in a statement on Monday.

"We call on the department of justice to act with urgency to make the necessary arrangements for the families to attend the hearings," he said.

"The interests of justice demand that the families are put at the forefront of the commission of inquiry."

Commission rules

On Monday, the department announced that Radebe planned to ask President Jacob Zuma to change the rules of the commission to require it to fund miners' families’ attendance of its sessions.

"The department has liaised with the commission this morning [Monday] to convey its intention to submit the proposed amendment to the president before the end of business... today [Monday]," justice department spokesperson Mthunzi Mhaga said in a statement.

"Mr Jeff Radebe regrets any confusion and misconception that may have been created by the decision taken by the department this past Saturday."

On Saturday, the department said it would no longer fund the attendance, at the commission's hearings in Rustenburg, of the families of some of the 34 miners killed in a police shooting at Marikana on August 16.

It said some of them had said they would prefer to have the travel money paid directly to them, as they were struggling as a result of the loss of their breadwinners.

Mhaga said on Monday that the interests of the families were being safeguarded by "seasoned legal representatives" at the commission.

‘Govt cares’

"Government has the interests of the families of victims at heart, hence we are working tirelessly to salvage the situation."

On Monday, the commission, chaired by retired judge Ian Farlam, began dealing with the funding of the families, Legal Aid assistance for the 78 miners wounded in the shooting and the 275 arrested, and the arrests of Lonmin mineworkers who attended the hearing last week.

Dumisa Ntsebeza, who represents the families at the commission, said they were entitled to attend. He called for the hearings to be halted until the families could be there.

"We are not able at this stage, to ascertain the veracity of the undertakings made... [to fund the families' attendance]," he told the commission.

  • johan.vanheerden.737 - 2012-10-29 17:23

    While I have sympathy for the workers that died we must not lose sight that they were busy with a unprotected/illegal strike and I hope there is a limit on how many family members can attend and to what level we (the taxpayer) will pay. I do not want a situation where we the tax payer pays gor somebody to have a free "holiday" in a 5 star hotel just because some far off relative of his were involved

      Rhentia Charmain Marais - 2012-10-29 18:47

      Johan ek stem honderd persent saam met jou.

      kenneth.hlatshwayo - 2012-10-29 19:27

      U such a heartless person. Money cannot buy the lives of those workers, if one of your family member was killed u were not gonna say this. Just coz they much tax do u even pay.

      lsfreak - 2012-10-29 19:44

      To a point I agree... Two family members or maybe parents and wife/partner, but the fact that they were no a "unprotected/illegal strike" has nothing to do with the fact that they were shot by the SAPS and as sitch the family should be allowed to be there. If Zipper can take as he pleases why not help a lil :/

  • Tello Moleko - 2012-10-29 17:52

    it means they have to be paid for transport and accommodation including food for duration of the commission,Radebe pay people at justice department with those millions

  • khanyo.ngwane.9 - 2012-10-29 17:52

    You will never understand this because it's not done in Europe. In SA it's called "Ubuntu"

      Jaap - 2012-10-29 18:10

      It is because they still don't understand where the money is coming from. Just go to the bank and it's there and they don't have to be accountable to nobody! It is like the one minister said " R18m! that is a nothing"

      Thabo Dijoe - 2012-10-29 18:11

      And why are you comparing SA to Europe?

      Shaun Daly - 2012-10-29 18:27

      Ubuntu is nebulous pseudo-philosophical twaddle. Ask 3 people what it means and you'll get three different explanations.

      johann.enslin.9 - 2012-10-29 18:33

      Lol@shaun, calling it "humanity" we might infer it's from Europe. Didn't you hear, there was no violence in Africa before the Europeans came?

      mlungisi.magada - 2012-10-29 18:48

      The settlers cannot be expected to understand non European concepts.

      brad.ken.18 - 2012-10-29 19:06

      PhD Troll!

      brad.ken.18 - 2012-10-29 19:09

      You wear civilised clothes, hair, makeup bla bla bla....f off back on all 4'rs and wear your leopard skin thongs! Its where you deserve to be! Enough said. Civilisation will prevail! Like it or not, primate!

      kenneth.hlatshwayo - 2012-10-29 19:30

      Agree with u can imperialists understand.

      julio.sanfona - 2012-10-29 19:32

      Ubuntu se gaat! It's not called Ubuntu, it's calles Mogaung (excuse the spelling, but you know what I mean!)

      johann.enslin.9 - 2012-10-29 20:54

      @mlungisi. From one settler to another, the khoi were first.

  • mphandejohn - 2012-10-29 18:21

    Give a million to each family's victim; case closed. R74m already spent translates to nearly R2m.

  • johann.enslin.9 - 2012-10-29 18:30

    Circus it is!

      Jaap - 2012-10-29 18:38

      And a circus it will stay!

  • ernest.lwandle - 2012-10-29 19:15

    only if the money can come out of julias the champion of the poor as they call him or jacob zuma the 2 main causes of this mes i feel sorry for the families as a human being

  • julio.sanfona - 2012-10-29 19:30

    This minister is now trying to appease the miners' families but when the crisis was in full swing they were no where to be seen. Oh wait a minute, there's an ANC election around the corner!

  • rigel.bernard - 2012-10-29 19:40

    on one hand you have people who went on an illegal strike and killed 10 people during their illegal strike, on one hand you have 43 people killed in an attempt to stop the strike. another dimension is that this is tax payers money, we pay vat (i am black), talk of being caught between a hard place and a rock. but ofcourse sanity eventually ruled the roost coz this is a sensitive topic to say the least.

  • Bontle Mpho Motoma - 2012-10-29 22:27

    @julio yeah its true nd its k@',those guys wth pangas went ther the gov ddnt sent them jerr its just a circus ohh its a waste of money this whole thing,they r hired wth busses frm e.cape nd wereva nw they dmand a pay that even a teacher is not paid while most of them dnt have matric oh by the way they r governed by a std2 ou topie agg this is s..t

  • andrew.mackie.90 - 2012-10-30 07:26

    Lets look at the facts, had there not been an illegal strike these deaths would have been avoided. However that is not the case and a tragic event took place with many deaths and families lost their breadwinners. Now the crux of the matter should we the tax payer foot the bill for these families to attend the official inquiry? Each and every person has their own thoughts on this matter. However has this decision set a a precident for future cases where the state (Taxpayer)must pay families to attend hearings or for that matter court cases? My belief, while I have sympathy at the loss of life, is no we should not pay these costs. The government state they care but in fact do they really or is this a face saving action on their part in doing nothing at the time of the illegal strike.

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