Lack of leadership blamed for Lonmin

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iol pic sa nt Lonmin-026 Tiro Ramatlhatse Forensic search a crime scene sticking Lonmin's mine workers were massacred by the police. Picture: Tiro Ramatlhatse

Rustenburg -

A lack of leadership was to blame for the shooting at the Lonmin platinum mine in Marikana, the ANC Youth League said on Monday.

“(It) came about because of a lack of leadership from society, SAPS (SA Police Service), and trade unions,” deputy president Ronald Lamola told reporters in Johannesburg.

“People were fighting for their jobs and for a living wage.”

Police opened fire during a strike at Lonmin's Marikana mine on August 16, leaving 34 workers dead and 78 wounded. Workers had been on strike for nearly two weeks, demanding their salaries be increased to R12 500 a month.

Lamola said the ANCYL's national executive committee believed the police should not have used live ammunition.

“Police at no point had the authority to use live ammunition. We want Minister 1/8Nathi 3/8 Mthethwa to take responsibility,” he said.

The league was blaming the shooting on the “failure of capitalism”.

Lamola said all parties involved had to co-operate with the judicial commission of inquiry, appointed by President Jacob Zuma to investigate the shootings.

Lamola said the ANCYL was supporting the investigation into allegations of arrested mineworkers being tortured by police. A total of 260 mineworkers were arrested.

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate was investigating and Mthethwa was receiving progress updates.

“The commission must not only point out wrongs committed, but must also bring recommendations that will change the living conditions of the miners and their salaries,” Lamola said. - Sapa

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