Johannesburg – On Wednesday, the entire EFF leadership visited Marikana, the site of the gruesome Marikana massacre, which saw 34 miners shot down by the police 11 years ago.
The site of the massacre has become the EFF’s yearly pilgrimage since the formation of the party 10 years ago.
In the past, EFF leader Julius Malema has indicated that it was the mineworkers who influenced him and persuaded him to open a political party and that their plight has always been closer to the EFF.
During his speech, Malema paid tribute to the slain miners, whose deaths led to the establishment of the political party. He said that 11 years after the incident, it still pains him to see that nothing has changed in the lives of the community and the families of those who died on that day.
“It was 11 years ago when we came here after the Marikana workers were butchered and executed, and the nation was left with no sense of humanity.
“The nation was shocked at how a regime that was once the hope of liberation would resort to cold-blooded murder, to crush the workers’ protest. What pains us more is that no one has been held accountable until today. If anything, others were promoted to the highest office in the land,” he said.
Malema, who drank sorghum beer on the koppie as a symbol of respect alongside other EFF leaders, also called for the koppie in Marikana to be declared a national heritage site.
Malema said the party wants August 16, the day of the Marikana Massacre, to be declared Worker’s Day.
“Only a government can fence that koppie, and it will happen when the EFF takes over the government of North West and South Africa declares this national heritage site. We will make sure no one tampers with Marikana. We know workers will be in Marikana on August 16, and we will move it and make sure August 16 becomes a workers day,” he said.