Marikana police "acted correctly"

The police handled the deadly Marikana protest correctly, according to a public order policing expert.

Police closely monitor tensions in Marikana in the North West Province on 14 August 2012. Picture: Taurai Maduna/EWN.

MARIKANA - A public order policing expert on Thursday said he agreed with the police's conduct in the days leading up to the Marikana shooting.

Brigadier Zephaniah Mkhwanazi testified at the Marikana Commission of Inquiry in Rustenburg, which is trying to determine whether police were justified in using maximum force.

Mkhwanazi said police were right when they tried to negotiate with protesters to disarm just days before 34 of them were gunned down in August.

Lonmin miners were shot dead by police while protesting for better salaries.

A total of 45 people, including police officers, lost their lives in connection with the strike action.

Advocate Ishmael Semenya, representing police, described the scene where one of the generals pleaded with the miners to handover their weapons, promising that no one would be arrested.

Mkhwanazi said he believe the police approached the matter correctly.

"Lie down, proceed, nobody would be arrested. There's nothing wrong with that. It's dialogue, its tolerance."

This was on the same day when two police officers were hacked to death.

The commission was set up by President Jacob Zuma following the shooting.

Retired judge Ian Farlam is heading the inquiry.