Marikana anniversary: Emotional day for victim's families

Community members, religious & political leaders paid tribute to those who died fighting for a living wage.

Candles are lit to commemorate the miners who died today three years ago. Flowers are handed to their family. Picture: Emily Corke/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - It's been an emotional day for the widows and families of the deceased Marikana miners with many saying they still want justice for their loved ones.

Today marked exactly three years since 34 miners were gunned down by police during a violent and unprotected strike.

Ten others were killed in the days leading up to the shooting.

Today community members, religious and political leaders paid tribute to those who died fighting for a living wage.

Bishop Jo Seoka who was at the forefront of the wage negotiations on behalf of the miners led the community in prayer today.

"We give our heartfelt thanks to for the good and example of all the people that have made us be here today. Those who have fought for human dignity especially the miners of Lonmin whom we pray for their souls today."

The widows lit candles in memory of their husbands while bouquets of flowers were handed over to them.

Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema says his party will continue to fight mineworkers, while the Democratic Alliance's Mmusi Maimane vowed to push for compensation from the state for the families of the victims.

While sombre at moments, many were jovial, drinking alcohol and dancing while the police watched from a distance not taking part in proceedings today.


Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) leader Joseph Mathunjwa says the Farlam Commission of Inquiry's report is a disgrace and the workers have to pursue other avenues to achieve justice.

Mathunjwa addressed hundreds of miners and community members in Marikana to mark three years since the deadly shooting.

The Amcu president says history will judge the perpetrators harshly but for now the families of the victims have not been offered justice.

Mathunjwa says the union's victory is the amount of attention this event has attracted for mineworkers across the country.

He says those who died three years ago will not be forgotten and did not die in vain, because his union will continue fighting for a living wage.