The defence team in the Marikana trial have successfully argued for the state to reveal details of dockets of the two scenes where 34 mine-workers were shot and killed in August 2012.
Former North West Deputy Police Commissioner William Mpembe and three other senior police officers are facing charges of contravening the Commission Act, the IPID Act and defeating the ends of justice by lying about the death of one of the 34 mine workers at the Farlam Commission of Inquiry.
The State wanted to confine arguments to his death, which it says happened en route to a detention centre at Lonmin mine. But arguing that he was killed on the koppie, the Defence wanted dockets from scene 1 and 2 to be admissible.
“Case 137/ and case 138/a/12, and all these dockets… I am told further arguments are from there, and this is the ruling of the dockets, and this is my ruling,” says North West High Court Judge Ronnie Hendricks.
These are the dockets Mpembe and five other officers will be tried on in a separate case of four alleged murders and six attempted murders of workers. Lawyers representing the 34 deceased workers were in court. This, as the case may have a bearing on the outcome of the Marikana Commission of Inquiry.
“The police successfully concealed the death of mine-worker. We want to know how he died, and generally families in Marikana want to know the truth of what really happened,” says lawyer of the 34 mine workers, Nomzamo Zondo.
A mine-worker who survived the ordeal, but was arrested, expressed shock at the revelations in court.
“This is for the first time I am hearing the sensitive information in court… at the Commission, so much was hidden, we want to know how our colleagues died,” says Marikana protestor Xolani Nzuza.
IPID investigators are expected to take the stand on Wednesday. Witnesses from IPID would be the first to take the stand. Judge Hendricks remanded the matter until Wednesday.
“This matter is remanded until tomorrow (Wednesday) 10 o’clock, you are warned to attend the case tomorrow, the court made an order, with regard to making available certain information requested by your legal representative, that is the reason the matter is remanded until tomorrow (Wednesday) morning, do you understand..?