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Failure to prosecute those responsible for Marikana massacre a "betrayal" - Seri

Sunday will mark the eighth year since 34 mineworkers in the North West town were gunned down by the police at the Lonmin Platinum Mine - one of the most extreme uses of police force in post-apartheid South Africa.

FILE: Amcu-affiliated miners demonstrate in Marikana on the platinum belt in the North West, where a strike in the sector has run since January. Picture: Sapa.

JOHANNESBURG - The Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa (Seri) said the persistent failure to prosecute those responsible in the Marikana massacre has further fueled police brutality in the country.

Sunday will mark the eighth year since 34 mineworkers in the North West town were gunned down by the police at the Lonmin Platinum Mine - one of the most extreme uses of police force in post-apartheid South Africa.

A total of 44 people died during the unrest – with ten people killed in the days leading up to the tragedy.

Following accounts of heavy-handedness throughout the lockdown by various law enforcement bodies resulting in violations of dignity, physical injury, and even death - Seri said police brutality can no longer go unpunished.

Seri’s Nomzamo Zondo said government’s failure to deliver any form of justice to the families has contributed to the country’s amnesia around the massacre.

“It is a moment of betrayal for them [miners] by the government. That moment has carried on in the past eight years as they’ve had to struggle to seek justice and the prosecution of those responsible.”

Zondo said while the families of the mineworkers continue to wait for justice, excessive use of force and brutality by the police persists.

“The lockdown showed us that the police are unaccountable as they were with the Marikana massacre.”
Several recommendations made by the Farlam Commission in 2018 into the killings are yet to be implemented.

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