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Mr X 'hurt' by implications of testimony

The police witness acknowledged that his testimony could've led to the murder of an Amcu branch secretary.

Mr X has told the commission he feels hurt that his testimony could have led to the death of the Amcu branch secretary. Picture: Sapa

JOHANNESBURG -Police witness Mr X has acknowledged at the Farlam Commission of Inquiry that his testimony about one of the striking workers could have led to his murder in Marikana two weeks ago.

Bongani 'Bhayi' Mehlonkomo was shot dead while on his way home from work at Lonmin's Rowland shaft.

Mehlonkomo was a branch secretary for the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) to which most of the workers who led the 2012 strike belong.

President Jacob Zuma appointed the inquiry to investigate whether police were justified in using lethal force on the day 34 striking miners were gunned down at Lonmin's Marikana mine on 16 August 2012.

Police claim they opened fire on the group after coming under attack.

Ten people were also killed in the days leading to the shooting including a mineworker, strikers, two Lonmin security guards and two policemen.

While his credibility has been questioned, Mr X insists that the miners planned to attack and kill the police at the North West Platinum mine in August 2012.

He claims he was part of the group of striking miners who destroyed property, killed people and planned to kill police before the 34 striking miners were shot dead.

He told the commission he feels hurt that his testimony could have led to the Amcu branch secretary's death.

Advocate Dali Mpofu, who is representing the injured and arrested miners, said his clients believe the assassination was due to Mehlonkomo's name being mentioned and this has led to them now living in fear.

Mpofu claimed most of Mr X's testimony has been fabricated and contradicts his earlier statements.

"I put it to you that this evidence shows that you are not a member of the community of 15. It also shows you that somebody must have given you the names of the committee members because what you are saying now contradicts what you said in your statement."

Mr X has denied this.

Commission chair Ian Farlam ruled earlier this year that the identity of Mr X may not be revealed to the public, but only to relevant parties and their clients two weeks prior to his testimony.

Several people who were expected to testify at the commission have been killed since the hearings commenced.