NUM backs Zuma’s inquiry

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iol news pic Lonmin violence10

REUTERS

A policeman gestures in front of some of the dead miners after they were shot outside a South African mine in Rustenburg. Photo: Reuters

The National Union of Mineworkers has welcomed the commission of inquiry to investigate the killing of striking workers at Lonmin Marikana mine in North West.

“The NUM strongly believes that such a commission is necessary and would help unearth the motive forces behind the senseless violence,” said the union on Friday.

NUM said the commission should help the country understand the underlying threats faced by the country's democracy.

It said the public display of dangerous weapons, threats and intimidation should have no place in the South African democracy.

President Jacob Zuma earlier announced that a commission of inquiry would be set up to uncover the truth behind the shootings at the Lonmin mine in Rustenburg where 34 protesters were gunned down this week.

“We remain fully committed to ensuring that this country remains a peaceful stable, productive and thriving nation that is focused on improving the quality of life for all,” Zuma told reporters at the Lonmin conference centre.

A total of 34 people were killed in a shootout that erupted near the mine on Thursday when police tried to disperse striking miners.

More than 78 people were injured. Another 10 people had by then been killed in the violent protests at the mine over the past week.

The protests were believed to be linked to rivalry between the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) over recognition agreements at the mine. Workers also wanted higher wages. - Sapa


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