1 minute read
19 Sep 2013
4:14 pm

Cops ‘withheld Marikana info’

There must be information police have held back in the inquiry into 44 deaths during labour unrest at Marikana last year, the Farlam Commission said on Thursday.

FILE PICTURE: Retired Judge Ian Farlam. Picture: Christine Vermooten.

Spokesman Tshepo Mahlangu said this had been discovered in the past ten days. The commission had, therefore, postponed its proceedings until Wednesday next week.

“In the past 10 days we have discovered through the evidence leaders that there must be info that was not disclosed by the police that seeks to suggest that the information was withheld to try and portray a certain approach to the commission in relation to what has been discovered,” Mahlangu said.

Previously, evidence leader Geoff Budlender, SC, asked that the commission be postponed to allow his team to examine the police evidence.

In Lt-Col Duncan Scott’s version on a computer hard drive containing the police’s evidence, “some documents have been added and some files we haven’t seen before”, Budlender told the commission.

He said the police team had been co-operative, but that the process of going through the evidence “could take some time”.

The commission, sitting in Centurion, is investigating the deaths of 44 people during strike-related unrest at Lonmin’s platinum mining operations at Marikana, near Rustenburg in the North West last year.

Police shot dead 34 people, almost all of them striking mineworkers, while trying to disperse and disarm them on August 16, 2012. Ten people, including two police officers and two security guards, were killed in the preceding week.

President Jacob Zuma established the commission shortly after the unrest.