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Investigators: Police Lying About S. African Mine Massacre

Mine workers sing before a memorial service near the Lonmin's platinum mine in Marikana, South Africa, August 16, 2013.
Mine workers sing before a memorial service near the Lonmin's platinum mine in Marikana, South Africa, August 16, 2013.
VOA News
South African investigators have accused police of lying about the events surrounding the shooting deaths of 34 striking miners in the town of Marikana last year.
The Marikana Commission of Inquiry says it obtained documents that show the police force's version of events at Marikana is "not the truth" in important aspects.
The commission's spokesman, Tshepo Mahlangu, said police will be given a chance to respond.
"At this stage this information still needs to be tested," he said. "The police needs to be given an opportunity to look at the information themselves and appear before the commission, and explain certain [details] which we find very contradictory."
The spokesman said that some information presented to the commission by police may have been doctored or tampered with.
A spokesman for South Africa's police ministry, Zweli Mnisi, says the ministry's policy is to not comment on the commission of inquiry's proceedings.
"So to begin to comment now via media platforms about the findings of the commission, it will be improper because it might jeopardize the outcome of the findings," he said.
The striking miners were shot on August 16, 2012, outside a platinum mine in Marikana, after days of rising tension with police. Witnesses said police opened fire on unarmed miners. Police disputed that account, saying the officers fired in self-defense.

The shooting is considered the most severe instance of police brutality in South Africa since the end of apartheid.
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Comment Sorting
by: Steward mcfreed from: welkom
September 22, 2013 5:19 PM most cases when police are attacked and in self defense retaliation when the suspect or attacker gets badly hurt due to the police experience and expertise, that is treated as police brutality. I guess the country should acquire robot cops so that trained humans cannot be blamed for the mistakes of the untrained humans. Some security officers and some police officers were also killed in the process but we do not hear of brutality against these officers. Those officers who lost their lives little is said about them as if they are not human race and that is not fair,

by: Steward from: welkom
September 22, 2013 5:01 PM
Opportunistic public attention seekers seem to ignore the fact that police officers are humans entitled to defend themselves against any danger they are confronted with that is the reason why they are armed.It was crystal clear from all video materials presented, that were on the retreating side when they were attacked.The mob of attackers were armed with all kinds of the so-called deadly traditional weapons designed for human life destruction. What did you expect the police force to do? drop their guns and ran away?turning into a laughing stock? Then this country does not need a police force. What if the police officers were all killed still having weapons of self defense? Would you still regard them as the best for the security of the country? Remember they are our brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers highly responsible in the line of duty. What they did was the last option to see them alive for the next day. There are three parties to be blamed in this tragedy.First the attacking mob which supposed to have known better that going for employment at the mines is not to engage into the battle field but work for their families. there were no reasons to be carrying the self made dangerous weapons. They supposed to have learned from the South African history that no-one becomes invisible to a bullet and no traditional doctor can turn a bullet into water. They repeated the mistakes committed by their fore-fathers now they are modern and should learn. They are self to blame for the tragedy.

the second culprits are the unions which are power greedy and failed to educate their members about their responsibilities .Yes they are in business but at the expense of the poor and uneducated.They have the upper hand upon their members but they failed to control them simply because each union involve wanted to prove appoint which union can represent their members better. Should they have united in controlling their members the tragedy would not have befallen the victims. They should blame themselves and their greed which is still on high tone.

The third culprit is the mine itself. They suppose to employ more well trained security personnel to deal with their internal disputes and affairs with proper security intelligence.

The fifth culprit is the government. The police force is trained by the government efficiently and its presence at the scene of tragedy was allowed by the government. Surely they were not expected to pose like dummies when they were attack. It suddenly surprising why the same government investigators found fault on the side of the police force they trained and dispatched to the scene of the tragedy. Somehow a dirty game is being played for hidden agendas. A sympathetic pledge is offered in the sense of the government taking the blame at the end. The reason being they can afford to compensate the families of the victims, which is just a drop in the ocean. In turn this will benefit the government when it comes to the elections were they will be regarded as the best and sympathetic. Dirty politics of self again at the expense of those with little understanding.

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