Arrested workers to be dismissed from Lonmin
None of the 254 striking Lonmin workers who appeared in court this week will be allowed back to work.
Testifying in court yesterday, investigating officer Gideon van Zyl, who is heading a team probing the deaths of the 10 people killed prior to the massacre - including security guards and policemen - said Lonmin management had made it clear those in custody would not be re-employed.
The news of the miners' imminent dismissal follows Lonmin's decision to hold back an ultimatum the company issued to workers to return to work.
It had heeded a request by President Jacob Zuma to allow the nation to observe a week of mourning.
Meanwhile, striking Lonmin workers refused to report for duty yesterday and instead gathered at the Nkaneng informal settlement in Wonderkop outside Rustenburg.
They sang liberation songs while awaiting the outcome of a meeting between Lonmin management and their representatives. Police officers in armoured vehicles kept watch from a distance.
Workers have been on strike for almost two weeks, demanding that their salaries be increased From about R4000 to R12500 a month.
Lonmin's management yesterday said only 13% of employees returned to work, citing intimidation. Over the weekend 57% of workers reported for duty.
The Friends of the ANC Youth League - formed to support expelled league president Julius Malema - said it was confident that the murder and attempted murder cases opened by the Independent Police Investigative Directorate would get to the bottom of the Marikana massacre.
The group's spokesman Floyd Shivambu said they would monitor the cases, including those opened last week by Malema, who was accompanied by mine workers.
The shooting incident left 34 miners dead and many others seriously injured.
National police spokesman Captain Dennis Adriao declined to comment on the alleged assaults of detained miners or allegations that some miners were shot in the back.
In the week leading up to the shooting of the miners, 10 people were killed by the strikers, including two security guards who were set alight in their patrol vehicle, and two policemen who were monitoring the situation.
Shivambu said the group had no faith in the commission that was established by President Jacob Zuma, charging that these - like the arms deal inquiry - lacked integrity and "can last forever".
Retired high court judge Ian Farlam was appointed by Zuma to head the judicial commission of inquiry which will probe the role and conduct of the police, the NUMand the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union in the Lonmin tragedy - as well as the Department of Mineral Resources or any other government department or agency in relation to the incidents.
The ANC's national executive committee (NEC) has asked that the shooting in Marikana not be used for political gain, secretary general Gwede Mantashe said yesterday after the ANC held a special NEC meeting.
"The special NEC appeals to all South Africans that nobody must use the tragedy for political and opportunistic reasons," Mantashe said in a statement.
"It [the NEC] expressed its support for the judicial commission of inquiry and . the composition of the inter-ministerial committee by government."
The inter-ministerial committee on the Marikana tragedy continues to maintain its presence in Marikana and surrounding areas.
Committee spokesman Harold Maloka said yesterday that the team would be stationed in various areas around Marikana until the work they were assigned was done. - Additional reporting by Sapa