Zuma will not engage with Marikana 'street talk'

2015-05-14 18:31
Jacob Zuma. (GCIS)

Jacob Zuma. (GCIS)

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Parliament - President Jacob Zuma will only consider the official Marikana report and not “loose talk in the street” about the need for senior police officials to be investigated for murder, he said in the NCOP in Parliament on Thursday.

He was responding to a supplementary question by UDM MP Lennox Gaehler, who had initially asked whether Zuma would be making the report of the Farlam Commission of Inquiry into the shooting at Marikana available to the public.

Gaehler said the general public opinion was that senior police officials, including National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega and former police minister Nathi Mthethwa, be investigated for murder and charged together with deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.

He wanted to know from Zuma whether these opinions and views were consistent with the recommendations of the commission.

Zuma responded: “I thought my answer was very clear. I received the report. I am looking at the report and the recommendations. I am not talking about loose talk in the street. I am talking about a report from the commission, which has very specific issues, even about the names the honourable member is talking about”.

“He is just making allegations about people. He does not even know what the report is saying.”

Using an arm in the air to drive the point home, Zuma said the report had very clear findings and recommendations and he would say what he was doing about the recommendations after releasing the report to the public, at a date yet to be determined.

Thirty-four people were killed near Lonmin's platinum mine near Marikana, North West, when police tried to disperse striking miners on August 16, 2012. More than 78 people were injured.

Ten people, including two police officers and two Lonmin security guards, were killed in the previous week.

The president said the report required careful consideration so it could be used to ensure a similar incident was never repeated in this country.

DA MP George Michalakis asked Zuma whether he would offer Phiyega a golden handshake, refer her to another office or have her fired, should the report find she was unfit to hold office.

NCOP chairperson Thandi Modise said he was speculating and that Zuma did not have to respond.

“No, I am not going to indulge in the speculation,” Zuma said to claps from the house.

EFF MP Vusiwana Mtileni raised a point of order.

“I think the president is dodging here because as much as ANC members don’t want to hear about the Nkandla issue I think this one also is something he doesn’t want to hear,” Mtileni said.

Zuma responded with humour, saying the EFF MP, who earlier in the day asked him when he was “paying back the money”, clearly had something in his head with Nkandla.

Read more on:    jacob zuma  |  cape town  |  marikana inquiry  |  parliament 2015

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