Yadhana Jadoo
Political Editor
3 minute read
1 Nov 2012
5:30 pm

Details of Marikana shootings revealed

Yadhana Jadoo

Rustenburg - A police forensic expert testifying to the Farlam Commission of Inquiry has presented details of where some striking miners were shot dead by police around a small koppie in Wonderkop, Marikana.

DEMAND. Advocate Dali Mpofu pauses in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria yesterday after submitting an application to have the report on the Marikana killings released immediately. Picture: Christine Vermooten

Captain Apollo Mohlaki was responsible for processing the scene at the koppie, also known as scene two, on August 16.

Mohlaki said he did not hear any of the shootings at the koppie or near a kraal, also known as scene one.

“When I arrived at scene one, what happened at scene two already did,” he said referring to the shootings.

In response to questions by evidence leader Mbuyiseli Madlanga, Mohlaki said he was told before the shooting that he would need to process a scene where some people carrying dangerous traditional weapons would be dispersed.

Mohlaki was meant to photograph these weapons.

An arrangement had to be made with Lonmin mine who provided him with light through a generator, because of darkness in the area. He pointed out to the commission where he bodies and weapons including self made spears, axes, bushknives, sticks and knobkerries were found.

Also spotted were proper traditional Xhosa weapons called an “inculasi” – which is any piece of iron which can be sharpened and can be used to stab.

The bodies of (A) Anele Mdizeni, and (B) Thabiso Thelejane, were found on the ground, he said, however there were no weapons found near them, and had observed that they had suffered from gun wounds.

Some weapons were found near body(C), Thobila Mpumza at the edge of the hill, he said.

Julius Mangcotwya (D), had been found with his head facing another rock on the northern side, whilst Rapheal Janeveke’s body (E), was spotted with his head facing the opposite side of the rock.

A full loaded firearm with 15 cartridges was then found near these bodies.

Mohlaki could not say if it was fired prior to this.

A number of cartridges and cartridge cases were found, including that of 9mm pistols and rifles.

The bodies Thabiso Mosebetsabe (G), and Mafolisi Mabiya (H), were found lying between two large rocks on the side.

Henry Mvuyisi Pato’s (M) body was laying between the rocks and trees, he said.

Mohlaki said some traditional weapons were found next to each of the bodies between D and M, however no cartridge cases were recovered around them, or even three meters from them.

Even though there were pictures of the deceased, it would not be shown because it would disturb loved ones, said Madlanga. However some pictures had been slipped onto the screens as a mistake by Mohlaki. Madlanga quickly addressed the situation, asking that he puts his hand over them when sifting through pictures.
The commission was then shown a cluster of tradional weapons laying on what appeared to be a blanket and a photograph of a police Inyala that was said to have been shot at.

According to Advocate Ismael Semenya on behalf of the police, evidence would be shown to the commission that about 500 rounds of rubbers bullets were fired and as much 400 of live ammunition.

Under cross examination by Advocate George Bizos, representing the Legal Resources Center, Mohlaki told the commission that had

none of his superiors had briefed him about a possibility of violence during dispersals.

“Are you saying they were not expecting any trouble?” asked Bizos.

He said nobody had referred to the strikers as criminals during the briefing.

The commission will resume at the Rustenburg Civic Center on Monday.