JUSTICE AND PEACE URGES POLICE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE TO INVESTIGATE LACK OF COMPENSATION FOR INJURED MINERS IN MARIKANA MASSACRE
The Police Portfolio Committee in Parliament should investigate claims that injured miners from the Marikana Massacre have not yet been compensated by the Government, the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SACBC) Justice and Peace Commission said on Thursday.
“We are shocked to learn that, five years on, no compensation has been awarded to the families of the dead and those injured during the Marikana tragedy. We ask the Police Portfolio Committee to exert more pressure and demand greater accountability on the matter. We call upon the Government to expedite legitimate claims so that the victims of this tragedy experience some form of healing.”
Chairperson of the SACBC Justice and Peace Commission Bishop Gabuza has also said that it is unacceptable that five years after the massacre nobody has been arrested and prosecuted: “We urge the National Prosecuting Authority to fast-track justice for the Marikana Massacre. Justice delayed is justice denied.”
On Wednesday the National Prosecuting Authority announced that legal proceedings against the 72 police officers involved in the killing of 34 miners during the Marikana Massacre have not yet started.
“Ideally, responsibility for the massacre should not stop with the police officers who pulled the trigger. We lament lack of accountability on the part of senior Government officials and the Lonmin leadership. There will be no healing from the Marikana tragedy in so far as there is no public apology and real accountability from senior Government officials. ”
The SACBC Justice and Peace Commission has also called on political parties to desist from using Marikana for scoring political points. “We ask the Government to consider the appeal made from various quarters to institute 16 August as a public holiday. At the same time, for genuine healing to happen among the victims of this tragedy, we appeal to all political parties not to use the Marikana tragedy as a political football.”