Violence breaks out during Ramaphosa speech

Protestors at a conference in Johannesburg accused Ramaphosa of being responsible for the Marikana shootings.

South African deputy president, Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: GCIS.

JOHANNESBURG - A group of protestors say they were assaulted during a conference attended by deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa in Johannesburg.

The protestors accused Ramaphosa of being responsible for the Marikana shootings in 2012 last night.

In August 2012, 34 miners were gunned down by the police at Lonmin's Marikana mine during a labour protest.

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

An inquiry was established by President Jacob Zuma to investigate if the police were justified in using lethal force.

The inquiry sat for 293 days and heard testimonies from 50 witnesses about the violence that broke out at the North West platinum mine in 2012.

A group of protestors were allegedly assaulted during a Muslim Civil Society dinner where the deputy president was a keynote speaker.

Ramaphosa was delivering the keynote address at the The Auwal Socio-Economic Research Institute; (ASRI) conference on the role of civil society in the implementation of the National Development Planat the Wanderers Club in Illovo this evening.

The protestors accused Ramaphosa of being a killer and demanded the release of the Marikana report.

"Ramaphosa is a killer, he killed the people in Marikana," The protesters said.

The protestors were arrested but released a short while later.


The deputy president spent two days on the stand at the Farlam Commission of Inquiry, answering questions about his involvement in the days leading up to the August 2012 shooting.

Ramaphosa admitted that the nation failed the people of Marikana and said there must be a collective responsibility for the tragedy on the platinum belt almost two years ago.

He was a non-executive director at Lonmin Platinum at the time.

Advocate Dali Mpofu, who is representing the miners at the commission, said Ramaphosa didn't do enough to stop the violence because his priority was financial gain.

Miners at the commission labelled the deputy president a murderer who could have done more to prevent the deaths in Marikana.

"This man killed the people of Marikana. He must be charged for murder. He's a sell out for profit!"