Phiyega won't go down without a fight

It’s unclear if the national police commissioner will survive in her position following the Marikana report.

National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega addresses the media at the Alexandra police station after a police constable killed four people at the station before fleeing the scene. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega said she will respond to the recommendation that she be investigated for her involvement in Marikana, but reports indicate she won't be leaving her position without a fight.

Phiyega's office released a statement on Friday that she would not be making any public pronouncements on Marikana but weekend reports indicate that she is feeling aggrieved because she was only heading the police for two months when the shooting occurred in 2012.

It's unclear if Phiyega will survive in her position following the commission of inquiry's report with some indications that a replacement is already being looked at.

President Jacob Zuma released the findings of the report on Thursday evening, outlining some of the main recommendations, although those who have been part of the commission have pointed out some discrepancies in Zuma's address to the nation and the actual report.

The police have been heavily criticised for their conduct on the day of the shooting when 34 miners were killed, with their operational plan considered as defective.

While the commission focused on the police's inadequacies, unions The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) were also criticised for not doing enough to stop the violence as well as Lonmin, for not safeguarding their employees.

However some of the surviving miners are still seeking other avenues to ensure justice is served.

While many South Africans are still digesting the 600-page report the overwhelming response is that there's been no compensation recommended for families of the victims nor immediate action against police or senior management within the service.


Marikana mineworkers and the families of those killed in the 2012 massacre at the Lonmin Platinum Mine have told their lawyers not to rule out launching an international court bid for justice.

Lawyer for the arrested and injured miners, advocate Dali Mpofu, said they have not ruled out approaching the International Criminal Court (ICC).

The workers were on Sunday addressed by lawyers and their union, the Association of Mineworkers & Construction Union (Amcu), on the contents of the Marikana report.

They voiced their anger at the exoneration of ministers Susan Shabangu, Nathi Mthethwa and then Lonmin shareholder, Cyril Ramaphosa.

Lawyer James Nichol appeared for the miners and families at the commission and said calling an international judge to hear evidence was not unheard of.

"There is a new commission commencing very shortly and the head of the commission comes from New Zealand. There is no reason at all why commissioners cannot come from outside of South Africa. It happens in the United Kingdom and other countries."

The lawyers told workers they would continue consultations every week and announce their planned action soon.


Miners and families of the victims said they also wanted to sue the state, saying the commission's report has offered no reprieve.

Those who were part of the inquiry have pointed out some discrepancies between what Zuma told the nation and the actual report.

Police have been heavily criticised for their conduct on the day of shootings when 34 miners were killed, with their operational plan referred to as 'defective'.

There is an overwhelming sense that not enough emphasis was placed on the police's conduct in the commission's report.

The community wanted individuals to be held accountable and for people to go to jail.

The report found that those members who fired at scene one had reason to believe that they were facing an imminent attack.

There are indications that some may well have exceeded the bounds of self or private defence, especially at scene two and these issues have been referred to the director of public prosecutions.

But questions have been raised as to why government hasn't been held accountable.

The commission also found that Amcu did not do enough to quell the violence during the six-week unprotected strike.

But mineworkers have rushed to the defence of Amcu and its leader Joseph Mathunjwa.

At least five workers raised their concerns with the commission for blaming Amcu.

To read the full Marikana report, _ click here_.

To read the highlights from the president's report _ click here_.

Follow the #EWNDebate on the Marikana report here.