'Only one cop charged over mass Marikana shooting’

Political and religious leaders have descended on the Koppie for a commemoration service.

Advocate Dali Mpofu addresses the crowd gathered to remember the 44 people killed four years ago at the North West Platinum Mine. Picture: Gia Nicolaides/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Advocate Dali Mpofu, who represents the injured and arrested Marikana miners, says while 17 workers are still facing charges today, only one police officer has been charged for the mass shooting four years ago.

Political and religious leaders have descended on the Koppie at the North West Platinum Mine for a commemoration service.

In August in 2012, a total of 44 people were killed - 34 of them by police in an operation that's come under fierce criticism.

Mpofu, the Economic Freedom Fighters' national chairperson, and lawyer for the Marikana miners, led the crowd in song this afternoon.

"'Zono zethu' (Our sins) - that was the song that was sung by the group of workers before they were mauled down."

Mpofu says he's helping the miners who are still facing criminal charges.

"There are also about 17 workers who are still facing criminal charges and we are making representations to the National Prosecuting Authority."

Meanwhile, Lonmin CEO Ben Magara says he knows that living conditions could be better in Marikana, but he's emphasised that the company suffered financially last year resulting in 6,000 employees losing their jobs.


Meanwhile, the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) leader Joseph Mathunjwa says mine workers are not being unreasonable by demanding the living wage that Marikana miners died for.

Mathunjwa adds the Marikana Commission of Inquiry has come and gone, with very few answers about why mine workers were killed, four years ago.

Mathunjwa says the amount of money the previous Lonmin CEO earned would take a miner 13 lifetimes to earn.

He says in the mining sector, Amcu has managed to raise the wage bar.

"Our fight comrade is far beyond the minimum. We are in the fight to get all workers in our sector, and economy as a whole, to earn a living wage.

"A living wage is primmest on the cost of living the economy."

Mathunjwa has told the thousands of people gathered that Amcu will continue fighting for the working class.

He says 16 August should be a public holiday instead of 1 May, to honour the workers who died for a living wage.

Mathunjwa says Amcu will continue supporting the miners.

"We've also established a Marikana Massacre Amcu Trust Fund whose beneficiaries are the widows and the children of the workers."