Legal Aid: Marikana funding will hurt us

The state body must provide funding to the miners at the Commission.

The Marikana Commission of Inquiry. Picture: Taurai Maduna.

JOHANNESBURG - Legal Aid South Africa says it will accept a court ruling forcing it to provide funding to miners injured and arrested at Marikana last year but has warned that this will have an impact on its sustainability.

The South Gauteng High Court ruled on Monday that the state body must provide the necessary funding to the miners for private representation at the Marikana Commission of Inquiry.

The inquiry is investigating the shooting at the North West platinum mine in August last year.

Legal Aid has examined the judgment and released a statement on Tuesday saying it would accept the order to provide funding.

But the organisation has reiterated its concern that the funding commissions of inquiry is beyond its mandate and budget.

It also says that providing the funds in this case would mean that it would have to reduce its budget for other criminal and civil matters.

Meanwhile, the miners' lawyers, advocate Dali Mpofu and his team returned to the commission on Tuesday after withdrawing for several months to fight for funding.

After the judgment was delivered on Monday, Mpofu said he and the miners were relieved but that a lot of work still needed to be done to continue their fight.