Police cameras under scrutiny

2012-10-30 19:50

Rustenburg - The use of police video cameras came under scrutiny during cross-examination of a crime scene expert at the Farlam commission of inquiry on Tuesday.

Thembeka Ngcukaitobi, for the Legal Resources Centre (LRC), asked Lieutenant Colonel Cornelius Johannes Botha if he was aware that police water cannons were fitted with video cameras at the front and rear.

"I have never been in a water cannon," Botha replied.

Ngcukaitobi asked Botha if, during a nine-day police debriefing in Potchefstroom, the video footage from the water cannons at the scene of the 16 August shooting in Marikana was viewed.

"I have seen no such video," Botha replied.

The commission, chaired by retired judge Ian Farlam, is probing the shooting of 34 striking Lonmin miners and the wounding of 78 others during a confrontation with the police in Marikana, North West.

According to Ngcukaitobi, Independent Police Investigative Directorate documents state the cannons were fitted with cameras.

"At the JOC [joint operations centre] meeting it was checked if the cannons worked and could be used for the operation."

He said it was possible that the cannons used could have video footage of what happened on 16 August.

Botha said the only police footage he was aware of was his own, which he took from a police helicopter.

However, he did not get footage of the actual shooting. There were four helicopters in the air that day. Two of them belonged to the police.

Ngcukaitobi also asked Botha if he knew helicopters were usually fitted with cameras.

He said the LRC would bring evidence from an expert that those cameras were "very powerful" and could have clearly filmed what was happening.

"Why didn't you check if the helicopter had a camera?" he asked Botha.

Botha replied that he did not even know helicopters were fitted with cameras. His cross-examination ended on Tuesday afternoon.

  • John - 2012-10-30 20:35

    Typical thug ! big deal bully in the field! Dances slimily around the issue when under scrutiny! Lily livered gutless useless wonder!

      arm.witmens - 2012-10-31 08:23

      What an apt way to describe your father!!!!

  • Neal Sing - 2012-10-30 22:10

    This cop is an idiot.Gunshots are loud.With the amount of people being massacred it must have been hard to miss.He is deliberately misleading the people interviewing him--nothing will happen to him!

      fussed.anderson - 2012-10-31 06:56

      Sing him a hyme

      merven.halo - 2012-10-31 08:37

      No one was massacred, only criminals were receiving what they deserved after they murdered two security guards and two cops.

      deon.louw.7505 - 2012-10-31 08:55

      You here very little in a helicopter but the noise of the engine, the area of protest was too big to cover. They might get a better view from a sattelite than 1 camera close to the ground.

      deon.louw.7505 - 2012-10-31 09:00


  • Martin Mowayo - 2012-10-30 22:49

    Lt Colonel Botha's ignorance is really disturbing,saw no evil and heard no evil.I would love to see his crime scene reports for the past ten years as an expert.The guy is empty headed and his reasoning capacity is below par.People like him deserve to be fired!

  • roy.nash.18 - 2012-10-31 06:10

    do not bring a knive to a gun fight and if you do make sure you can lose the numbers witch you did

  • Ntloko Yamazizi - 2012-10-31 07:45

    what do you mean it's a wyst of money we lost many souls there, must we lv it like that

      arm.witmens - 2012-10-31 08:25

      because the people that were shot deserved it and were thugs who killed INNOCENT people. Are you being this stupid by choice??

      merven.halo - 2012-10-31 08:38

      Well said Proudly Me

  • arthur.salvado - 2012-10-31 07:56

    Stop wasting money. Nothing will come of this except that the miners are guilty and perhaps so. The police will NOT be found guilty. Silly.

  • parys.fotograaf - 2012-10-31 08:08

    What a waste of money. Just get all killers and deal with them under common law.

  • wayne.davey.5 - 2012-10-31 08:49

    Everybody making a big deal of the cops shooting armed thugs charging them, but nobody makes mention of the innocient police, security and miners that these thugs killed before this shooting accured. What is wrong with this picture. So it is OK to kill in the name of the cause.

  • paul.korb.9 - 2012-10-31 14:07

    Uh Duh ! i is a poliesman on patrollie i mean sleeping at my desk! waste of tax payers money!

  • lunga.mdutshane - 2012-10-31 22:14

    How much more ignorant can some fellow South Africans get? This Botha guy is pretending to know nothing, does it run in our blood, pleading ignorance as a form of legal defence. How do you call this a waste of money, there is plenty of public information on this issue, you would think people would comment based on sound and informed arguments. Every person, including suspects have rights before the law, this principle is enshrined in our constitution. Regardless of what had happened on the days prior to the massacre, the police had no right to execute people the way they did. Some commenters should be screened before they allowed to post. It is public knowledge that most of those killed were shot at the back, meaning they were executed. Conviniently the police lost and distorted some of the key evidence. Which is why these 'so called' cops plead ignorance when it comes to this self-incriminating footage. 'So called' because real cops bring order in a sitation and not execute. Otherwise we would have the likes of one fired police chief wrecking havoc on the streets with their ill-informed 'shoot to kill' slogans

  • lunga.mdutshane - 2012-10-31 22:21

    Just in case people didn't know, not even the most hardened serial killer will get a death penalty in SA.

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