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Marikana inquiry to continue

Commission head Ian Farlam said no postponement would be granted at this stage.

Police open fire at protesting workers at the Lonmin mine in Marikana, North West on 16 August, 2012. Picture: Taurai Maduna/Eyewitness News.

RUSTENBURG - An application by two advocates to have the Marikana Commission of Inquiry postponed was denied on Monday.

Advocates Dumisa Ntsebeza and Dali Mpofu called for a 14-day postponement, saying the families of those killed in the violent attacks should be present.

The advocates, who are representing the families of the deceased and those arrested for public violence, submitted the application earlier in the day.

An inspection at the site where 34 miners lost their lives in a confrontation with police is expected to take place later on Monday.

Ntsebeza and Mpofu wanted the delay in order for all those affected to be present for the inspection.

Retired Supreme Court of Appeal judge and commission head Ian Farlam said the investigation must get underway and no postponement would be granted at this stage.

George Bizos, who is representing the Legal Resources Centre, argued against the delay saying it would impede the function of the commission.

The hearing was established by President Jacob Zuma to probe the August 16 bloodbath.

In total, 45 people died during the six week long strike at the North West mine.

The industrial action finally ended when unions and Lonmin bosses agreed on a 22 percent wage hike.

Earlier, the names of those who died were read out and a minute of silence was observed.

The inquiry is expected to cost R50 million and the hearings will take place at the Rustenburg Civic Centre.