Marikana mining massacre: three years on, justice still denied.

13 August 2015 - 10:45am
Press release

On 16 August, 34 striking miners were shot dead by police at the British-owned Lonmin platinum mine in Marikana, South Africa. They were demanding the same pay as workers at a nearby mine when the police opened fire.

Three years on, the families of the killed miners’ are still denied justice. In 2014, President Jacob Zuma, in response to intense public pressure, set up a ‘Commission of Inquiry’ to investigate who had given the order to open fire that day. The report was published in March 2015.

While the findings absolved the police, the state and the mining company of any responsibility for the miners’ deaths, they also revealed how officials, in their attempt to uncover the truth, were stymied at every turn by the South African Police Services.

Tom Lebert, Senior International Programme Officer (Resources & Conflict) at War on Want, said:

“What happened at Marikana was a tragedy; the investigation that followed a travesty. It’s a scandal that three years on, no one has been held to account for these crimes and the families’ search for compensation and closure drags on.

“The contempt in which the police held the miners and their families was shockingly clear. The fact that records of a key meeting, at which police tactics were discussed and the decision taken to disperse and arrest the miners, have since disappeared, shows the extent of this shameful cover-up.

“It is time for a second inquiry, independent of the state, that puts the victims and their families first, not the careers and reputations of police officers, politicians and mining companies.”

This week families’ began issuing civil claims against the South African Government.

 

NOTES TO EDITORS

For more information and to arrange interviews please contact Ross Hemingway on +44 (0) 7983 550 728.

To commemorate the 3rd anniversary of the Marikina Mining Massacre, War on Want will be hosting a screening of the powerful documentary ‘Miners Shot Down’, followed by a Q&A with the film maker Rehad Desai, and James Nichol, lawyer for the families of the miners.

Latest news

Reaction: UK abstention from UN Gaza vote makes a mockery of commitment to international law

19 May 2018 - 9:00am

Trusting that Israel can fairly and neutrally investigate its own war crimes is an insult to any common sense definition of justice, and makes a mockery of the UK’s stated commitment to international law, human rights, and accountability

Read more

Press release: BP’s Manchester shareholder meeting faces protest over fracking and human rights abuses

16 May 2018 - 11:45am

Oil company’s first ever Annual General Meeting in Manchester faces protest with participants from communities affected by BP’s operations in Argentina and Colombia.

Read more

Join the conversation

Hold to account for the social and environmental devastation have brought to Argentina and Colombia. Demand… https://t.co/ssEVQmiG4W 1 hour 10 min ago
Forcible displacement is a war crime. The UK must insist on the implementation of Palestinians' , in… https://t.co/aeeHbguDda 1 hour 56 min ago
Important call from Palestinian human rights groups for international civil society to undertake campaigns to… https://t.co/FwlhVzY9Qc 1 hour 59 min ago