Court hears cops were in the same building when Marikana miner was declared dead
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MOGWASE - Four senior police officers accused of concealing circumstance of a mineworkers's death were in the same building after the Marikana shootings on August 16 2012, North West High Court heard on Thursday.
Former Attredgeville station commander Samuel Seboloki told the court that between 6pm and 9pm former North West deputy commissioner Major-General William Mpembe, Brigadier Gideon van Zyl, Colonel Dingaan Madoda and Captain Oupa Pule were in the same building.
He said was instructed to take over the detention centre to process the arrested mineworkers.
Seboloki said accused number four, Pule, was supervising fingerprints and photographs of the detainees, while accused Van Zyl was the provincial head of detectives in the joint operation centre.
Seboloki said he was with the accused when he saw the body of a male in one of the detainee trucks. The male was lying in the truck on his left side. His hands were tied with cables behind his back.
"It was captain Pule who came to the truck with two other officers," he said.
Paramedics were called and they declared the man dead after examining him, Seboloki said.
"I called Brigadier van Zyl telling him about the dead man in the truck. He arrived at the detention centre and I introduced him to Captain Pule and Colonel Madoda who were at the truck.
Seboloki told the court Mpembe arrived at the same time as the mortuary van. He said he had no idea what happened to the body thereafter.
The four are on trial for alleged contravention of the Commissions Act, contravention of the Independent Police Directorate Act and defeating the ends of justice.
They were arrested in March 2018 after an investigation by the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid), found that mineworker Modisaotsile van Wyk Sagalala died in police custody and not in hospital or at the scene when the police shot dead 34 mineworkers on 16 August 2012 in Marikana.
The State charged that they concealed the circumstance of Sagalala's death.
Six witnesses have already testified. The trial was postponed to Monday.