Govt acts on mine violence

2012-09-14 15:33

Pretoria - Put down your weapons and stop committing violence, or face the full might of the law, Justice Minister Jeff Radebe warned striking miners on Friday.

In an announcement made in Pretoria, following a meeting of security cluster ministers and other Cabinet members, he said government would no longer tolerate the violence, threats and intimidation taking place in the mining sector.

"The South African government has noted and is deeply concerned with the amount of violence, threats and intimidation that is taking place in our country, particularly in the mining industry. "These acts... clearly undermine our government's efforts of ensuring economic and security stability," Radebe said.

The government recognised that if the current situation continued unabated, "it will make it even harder to overcome our challenges of low economic growth and high unemployment".

"Our government will not tolerate these acts any further."

He announced measures to be put in place to ensure the situation was brought under control.

These included that "illegal gatherings, the carrying of dangerous weapons, and incitement, as well as threats of violence against anyone in the affected areas, will be dealt with accordingly".

Not declaring state of emergency

Radebe said law enforcement agencies "will not hesitate to arrest those who have been found to have contravened the law".

Government was making a "clarion call" on all South Africans to desist from such illegal acts.

Asked if he was declaring a state of emergency, Radebe responded: "No, but we want stability; we want to bring about normality in the mining sector in South Africa. We can no longer tolerate acts of intimidation, illegal gatherings, and the carrying of dangerous weapons."

Those who wanted to go to work had to be allowed to do so without any intimidation.

Speaking at the briefing, State Security Minister Siyabonga Cwele said the "key" issue was the deaths caused by dangerous weapons.

"What is key is... these dangerous weapons kill our citizens. They are not just decorative things, or traditional things, but they actually have killed our people.

"Carrying dangerous weapons and firearms [and] participating in illegal gatherings is not going to be tolerated by law enforcement officers," he said.


Asked if the police would use live ammunition to enforce the law, Radebe responded: "The question of live ammunition - that's an operational matter, so we will not answer that."

He said the measures announced applied to affected mining areas only, and not the rest of the country.

Asked if the announcement was a warning to expelled ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema - who has called on miners to stage a mass national strike - Radebe said the measures were not aimed at specific individuals.

"This statement... is not directed at any specific individual or individuals."

It sought to ensure stability in the country.

He then added: "But all those who break the law, regardless of who they are, they will be dealt with the full might of the law. That's the message we want to present today."

Cwele told journalists: "No more incitement of violence will be tolerated."

Asked if the army would be deployed to help police, Radebe, after noting that it was the police who were responsible for security in South Africa, said: "That will be an operational matter. Who they want to be reinforced with."

The decision would be taken by the national commissioner.

He said law enforcement agencies "will not hesitate to arrest those who have been found to have contravened the law".

  • larry.piggott1 - 2012-09-14 15:41

    4 months too late with the miners. Years late with the municipal workers, Taxi industry, etc. It is hurting the ANC now, so only now they say that they will act. Yet got to be seen though?

      glen.e.huysamer - 2012-09-14 20:14

      That is because the truth is out they have all been stealing the mine workers wages for years, via labour agencies owned by one of their own, this whole matter is now beginning to implicate numerous ANC/Alliance leaders and partners and this is what is freaking the ANC out. They have begun to eat themselves and are now running for cover, hoping that the defense force will come to their rescue, they have become the National party but even worse, they will take the country to war so they can cover up their disgrace. This is where we are standing at the CrossRoad of 2012

      bernpm - 2012-09-14 23:09

      Waky, waky...minister (or whatever you call yourself). The Mangaung alarm bells??

      mark.schulz.796 - 2012-09-15 03:59

      PW got a tan... it's time to cross the Rubicon again.

  • julian.booyens - 2012-09-14 15:43

    You have to put these words into action and make examples of them or I am going to see them laughing in your face.

  • grimmister.ree - 2012-09-14 15:44

    Cant wait for Monday morning...would love to see the outcome of these warnings..and how both sides are going to react.

      mark.schulz.796 - 2012-09-15 04:01

      All that needs to happen now is for Julius to be arrested and 'fall out of a barred window trying to escape police custody'. The bad old days are back, people.

  • raymond.buis.3 - 2012-09-14 15:47

    Or what the government is going to give them a stern talking to? The government is so worried about losing votes they won't do anything. Talk about a hollow threat.

  • louis.nel.7927 - 2012-09-14 15:48

    Follow this link to read the truth about Marikana

      raymond.buis.3 - 2012-09-14 15:50

      And? People have been exploited since the dawn of time. If you don't like the pay packet don't take the job and if you do don't murder people because all of a sudden you are now only realizing you are beeping exploited. Grow a brain.

      themba.thwala.98 - 2012-09-14 16:04

      Louis, in this case it seems like the `truth` lies in the eyes of the gullible. Anyone can write and post his version of the `truth` on the internet. You have also been punting this `truth` that`s been written by a fictitious author for too long. Please stop it now.

      stirrer.stirrer - 2012-09-14 16:42

      Themba, everything in that article is documented fact. Calling it "lies" just shows your ignorance.

      raymond.buis.3 - 2012-09-14 16:58

      @stirrer like I said and? No one forced them to take the job.

      themba.thwala.98 - 2012-09-14 17:02

      Stirrer, I'm interested to know where is this FICTION documented. Malcolm proved that it was all lies, and Louis did not respond. (see the article on Cwele: “Government won't tolerate illegal.” gatherings.” Maybe Louis wrote it under the pseudonym “Arthur ...”

      malcolm.james.macleod - 2012-09-14 17:47

      Quote from the 'article' - "Cyril Ramaphosa in fact owns 9% of Lonmin" The Cyril Ramaphosa trust owns ~30% of Shanduka, Shanduka owns ~50% of Inkwala, Inkwala owns ~18% of a subsidary of Lonmin. So to correct the website, "'Cyril Ramaphosa' in fact indirectly owns 3% of a subsidary of Lonmin. Hmm, yes everything in that article documented indeed. The rest of the article is flooded with similar half truths and misrepresentations of the truth none of which are backed up by actual links to prove them. It would do people good to be far more skeptical of what they read and do some actual research of their own. Shanduka is 25% owned by 'China investments' - perhaps you should start a conspiracy about that as well.

      themba.thwala.98 - 2012-09-14 18:01

      There you go. Thank you Malcolm. Hey Stirrer, have you lost your memory as to where the fiction is “well~ document”, or should one go and search for it in space somewhere? :)

      martin.gardner.923 - 2012-09-15 00:48

      I agree with Themba!

  • luke.dekoker - 2012-09-14 15:49

    Mr. Radebe, it is great if true democracy is applied. Are you not going against zuma by saying "Those who wanted to go to work had to be allowed to do so without any intimidation", afterall your president did say "democracy = majority rules"???

  • hudayfah.newman - 2012-09-14 15:51

    Interesting times ahead. Could get violent. I'm getting my popcorn ready!

  • shirley.steenkamp - 2012-09-14 15:54

    Ok,now you have voiced your "intentions",let us see them put into practice! After ll it has taken you long enough to reach this point. The rest of the world thinks the S.A. government is taking a siesta!

  • willem.v.hoven - 2012-09-14 15:56

    A warning is an action... O,I forgot, we are in Africa.

  • Chikane - 2012-09-14 15:57

    U see Nike is a known brand because their tag line is \JUST DO IT-stupid\ and stop informing us what u plan to do. Time is money, y hint first? Just do it Mr Minister and stop informin us!

  • Daniel Mah - 2012-09-14 15:57

    too little too late

  • louwhan.hoffmann - 2012-09-14 15:58

    It is the ANC break up I was waiting for. It will see the party split in 2, maby 3. This is the only way the DA can be king maker, alliance with the least radical of the 2/3 party faction.

      jerry.medina.756 - 2012-09-14 16:14


      nrgx.nrg - 2012-09-14 16:41

      Jerry - DA is useless at being useless!

  • Pieter Strydom - 2012-09-14 16:00

    viva comrade Jeff!! show me the money!!!!

  • roger.hess.14 - 2012-09-14 16:00

    “Our government will not tolerate these acts any further”; "No more incitement of violence will be tolerated" and "will not hesitate to arrest those who have been found to have contravened the law" All of this talk sounds great and is very long overdue, but there is a very old saying used in most leadership training academy’s: “Actions speak louder than words”. Do something unusual for a change & take action,.. don’t just talk.

  • tshepoya.bamagoro - 2012-09-14 16:01

    All this signals Change in Leadership

  • jenine.nicholson - 2012-09-14 16:02

    Its about time someone grew a backbone and put their foot down!

  • Teuneman - 2012-09-14 16:03

    Show us some action to back that statement so we can believe you.

  • deon.louw.7505 - 2012-09-14 16:03

    This should not be tolerated in the whole country not just the mines. Service delivery protests or any other protests that turns violent should be treated the same way: disarm, disperse and lock them up.

  • keith.f.murphy - 2012-09-14 16:14

    Radebe you idiot be careful you will be caught in fire you corrupt assh*le

  • jan.human - 2012-09-14 16:14

    And it took 6 weeks..... As julle wakker word is julle koffie koud!

  • malcolm.james.macleod - 2012-09-14 16:16

    This should have been done at the very start, or better yet years ago. It's disgusting that it too so long, but at least finally someone has said something sensible.

  • Johannes Nkosi - 2012-09-14 16:16

    It is too late, Mr Vavi has warn for several time, says we are sitting on ticking time bomb; now the bomb has expload.

  • bullardx - 2012-09-14 16:16

    "WOw > Its about time you guys releasied dat yal got enuf ballz to face this issue....after a number of days:p

  • brendan.daly.581 - 2012-09-14 16:17

    About time! It took long enough.

  • gandanga.tororo - 2012-09-14 16:19

    Sleeping on the wheel. What does it sound like? Heyi madoda.

  • peter.mansfield.395 - 2012-09-14 16:20

    WRONG HEADLINE! Should be "Government TALKS about mine violence".

  • mart.botha - 2012-09-14 16:23

    Asking 'if they would use live ammunition' has got to be the daftest question anyone can ask. When will people on both sides of the divide realise that this is not a game of 'tit for tat' or of 'gaining grounds'. The authorities will be doing a disservice to those who respect the rule of law and conform to what society sees as acceptable behaviour, if they do not take an absolute hard line with the dissidents. These dissidents are 'entitled by their own proclamation to take up arms against the government and the people', but then they must expect nothing less than maximum force to quell their uprising.

  • bbooyse - 2012-09-14 16:24

    What about sedition? Or is Malema untouchable?

  • lwazi.mgudu - 2012-09-14 16:25

    Miners should be paid something close to R12 500. Everything will turn back to normal, simple. e.g. If the miners are offered R8.5k and they reject it, then the public will no longer sympathise with them

      customdesign - 2012-09-14 16:32

      They should not be paid a cent- that will set a president that it is okay to strike illegally and kill people to get what you want.

      christiaan.vanvuuren.9 - 2012-09-14 16:35

      Yes and i dont have a clue who these sympathisers are... Since ive never talked to anyone sympathising...

      alan.mcnab.35 - 2012-09-14 16:45

      Lwazi , what happens two months down the line when they wake up one morning and Juju is saying 'you should not earn less than R20,000 per month' ? Take up spears and guns and knives and threaten everyone again? Dialogue and peaceful actions are the democratic and civilised way to go forward !

      john.halfpenny.395 - 2012-09-14 19:52

      the problem is mate... If the Miners get their 12500, More strikes will follow. Next it will be all the Mechanics and then the Panel-beaters and then the teachers and then... Winter is coming

  • Lucky Prince Masoeu - 2012-09-14 16:26

    My questions is which one of all the strikes/gathering taking place are legal? As far as i know they are all illegal. So is the government gonna stop all the strikes now?

  • andrew.mackie.90 - 2012-09-14 16:32

    Hooray! At last some action from our government or is it just threatening talk? How about the instigators will they also face the full might of the law for their role in stirring up emotions and threats to distabilize mines and in so doing the ecconomy?

  • mike.clery - 2012-09-14 16:35

    It wouldn't have happened if they'd stood their ground after the Marikana shooting. Instead, we got all this hand-wringing and sympathy for a mob who were breaking the law, some of whom had already murdered 10 people!

  • varena.vahuu - 2012-09-14 16:35

    This has been long over due. The responsible authority shd arrest Juju on his next move. He is causing much harm than solving miners' issues. Buy the time they will get what they r crying 4 that money 'll be useless. Ballot is the only weapon juju not the way u r doing. We need the investors & keep the rand with its value.

  • Harold Chisimba - 2012-09-14 16:35

    Action action action! Gorvenment- You must walk your talk,without hestation.

  • james.ndamba - 2012-09-14 16:39

    Why is carrying of weapons during demonstrations and inpublic allowed?Why do people dont respect the President during their speeches?How will other nations respect your president if anyone can denigrade him on international tvs in the guise of democracy?

  • luthando.yaso - 2012-09-14 16:40

    The zulus have spoken

  • roberto.m.quintas - 2012-09-14 16:46

    am wondering if overseas governments have not been sending ambassadors to Tuyn Huis and thE Union Buildings for gentle "chats" investment and sanctions = poorer politicians....that may jump start things. And if that is what it takes: brilliant!

  • Erna - 2012-09-14 16:50

    So what are they actually saying? Those things are against the law in any case and were happening while they were speaking! Question is WHAT are they doing about it?

  • daniel.machet - 2012-09-14 16:50

    I remember Radebe backing down time and again with the taxi industry while he was transport minister.... wonder where he's gonna summon the stones from to confront this lot?

  • alan.mcnab.35 - 2012-09-14 16:51

    Well done Government , if they want to intimidate with weapons and violence then they must be met with the same but with superior force . When they put down their weapons , stop intimidating and killing people and come to the negotiating table peacefully in a civilised manner then , treat them accordingly !

  • freddie.jones.58367 - 2012-09-14 16:51

    Its too late, the CRIMINALS have already got away with MURDER!

  • thozi - 2012-09-14 16:52

    I will support any effort by the government to maintain law and order. This 'democracy of lawlessness' was really depicting the ANC government as a bunch of nannies. The situation is already out of control with the "rabbit-worshipers" breaking the law as they pleased and harassing law-abiding citizens in the process. Enough is enough.

  • enlightened.bowman - 2012-09-14 16:56

    What a bunch of f--king jungle bunnies. They are not sure what is going on, they have absolutely no clue what to do withi it so the best thing to do is simply....not answer. My absolute best though, is when they use these great big words and try to sound educateeed.

  • dexter.morganson - 2012-09-14 16:57

    ANC playing both sides again. They are the ones behind this mess anyways. I stick by what I said, Malema is just doing what the ANC WANT to do but are "afraid" of doing(international opinion and ramifications). What do they want to do, completely chase away all the mining companies and then sell it off to the Chinese who are just good friends of the Communist ANC? Ha...Wonder how many stupid black people will have jobs then. They can't go on "R4500" a month, they won't be able to compete with the Chinese work force that'll do the same job for a bowl of rice. The blacks are protesting to their own demise and they don't even know it. I love it.

      sello.kobe - 2012-09-14 17:28

      You are so racist

      dexter.morganson - 2012-09-14 17:49

      Wow... I won't hold my breath that you'll be the one to talk reason into the minds of your brothers/sisters. Your whole argument finds its basis in "racist". As if I didn't expect a black to come out and use that argument... Rather focus on the point I made, these blacks are destroying themselves and they don't even know it. Will you better an offer by a Chinese worker working for 1 bowl of rice a day? I think not.

  • enlightened.bowman - 2012-09-14 16:58

    @vierkleur.Transvaal. No Mister, it is the end of South Africa the way you and I know it.

  • Kalari - 2012-09-14 17:01

    at last !!!!

  • rich.mashimbye - 2012-09-14 17:28

    Cry the beloved country! The state is in the hands of a prebendal, rapacious elite, with neither wisdom nor will to advance the interests of South Africa's poor. Change start now! Rise DA rise! Rise South Africa rise! Down with the ANC, COSATU

  • davy.botha - 2012-09-14 17:37

    "Damned if you do, Damned if you dont", the fact is that for some time the goverment through lack of action has condoned this way of protesting. Now with this economic and social implications they want to act because it is a political threat to the ANC. Government should act on what is unacceptable in a democratic society and this is what is sorely lacking. The chicken are now coming home to roost. Unprotected and violent strikes should have ramifications for the offending parties and this is what is sorely lacking in this country where the government dont take the lead and act. Service delivery protests, wage protest ens. There are the right way of dealing with disputes and then there are anarchy. Governments are suppose to prevent anarchy!

  • allhaleto.theale - 2012-09-14 17:53

    These "measures only apply to the affected mining areas" So "illegal gatherings, the carrying of dangerous weapons, and incitement, as well as threats of violence against anyone in the affected areas" is ok elsewhere.

      dexter.morganson - 2012-09-14 18:05

      Let's measure that up...In the one corner you have innocent people that might get killed by those weapons and in the other corner, You have a bunch of criminals(Who we all know gets protected) that will cry foul because the removal of those weapons will mean that they are being infringed on their right to display/practise their traditions. Hmmmm. Which one is more important for the African National Criminals.

  • bless.boswell - 2012-09-14 18:40

    "Our government will not tolerate these acts any further." How I wish we could read this comment with regard to corruption!!!