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Presidency outraged by verbal attack on Judge Farlam

Dumisa Ntsebeza told the crowd at the Marikana anniversary that the commission’s report is a disgrace.

FILE:Dumisa Ntsebeza told the crowd at the Marikana anniversary that the commission’s report is a disgrace. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - The presidency says it's shocked and outraged at a verbal attack on retired judge Ian Farlam by renowned advocate Dumisa Ntsebeza.

On Sunday, Ntsebeza, who represents the families of the Marikana victims, told hundreds of people at the three-year anniversary of the 2012 shootin g, where 34 miners were killed, that the commission's report is a disgrace.

Farlam and his findings on Marikana have come under heavy criticism, with the presidency now jumping to his defence.

During the commemoration political leaders and lawyers representing the miners and the families of the victims criticised the findings of the commission of inquiry.

Advocate Ntsebeza told the crowd in Marikana on Sunday that the commission of inquiry has failed them.

"What a disgrace the commission's report."

Earlier, the presidency said Ntsebeza's remarks are shocking, especially as he is a senior member of the legal profession and had ample opportunity to raise his issues during the hearings.

Farlam was appointed by President Jacob Zuma to lead an inquiry in the mass shooting and the events leading up to the tragedy.

The presidency's Bongani Majola said, "Now an attack on a member of a judiciary, whether past or present, from a senior member of the legal profession, who also sit on the Judicial Commission, is shocking to say the least."

The presidency said throughout the proceedings before the Marikana Commission, Advocate Ntsebeza was aware of the matters over which Judge Farlam had presided and had ample opportunity to raise whatever concerns he may have had with the learned Judge.

"To raise them now on the completion of the Commission's work evinces a lack of respect and a callous disregard for the decorum which is otherwise shown by all self-respecting members of the legal profession."

POLITICAL RALLY

For a brief moment, the commemoration was turned into a political rally on Sunday.

EFF leader Julius Malema said the ANC government was behind the killings in August 2012.

"The families of those who were killed by the murderous regime led by the ANC and its brainless president."

He said the commission of inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the shooting didn't provide answers.

"Not because Zuma wanted to do a commission; he wanted to be seen doing something. Until today, no one has been charged."

Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane was just as critical about government, saying Phiyega should have been fired and more must be done for the families of the victims.

"We will be going to Parliament to join the fight to say the compensation fund must be set up."

Meanwhile, Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) leader Joseph Mathunjwa also called on more workers to join his union, saying it's the only way they'll be liberated.

CRIMINAL CHARGES

Earlier today, advocate Dali Mpofu said they're filing criminal charges against those they believe are behind the killings, because they are not satisfied with the outcome of Marikana commission of inquiry.

"We're going to do a case before December, which is the review of the Farlam commission."

Amcu's leader Joseph Mathunjwa also criticised the findings.

"The Commission or correctly put, Omission of Inquiry."

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