SAHRC calls for law enforcers to treat Marikana massacre scene as a crime scene until investigations are completed.
22 August 2012
Editors and Reporters
Following the tragic incident in
Marikana Lonmin Mines, Rustenburg, the South African Human Rights Commission
raised concerns over the deaths of miners and the police. We immediately
dispatched our team on Sunday, 19 August, to the area where the shooting incident
took place and found amongst others, that:
- clothes and other traditional weapons were
still scattered on the hill where miners gathered;
- allegations were made by some of the
community members we spoke to about police tampering with or not protecting
- the scene of crime on Sunday, a few hours
after the massacre, had still not been cordoned off;
We subsequently met with the
Independent Police Investigative Directorate who assured us that they were also
investigating the case. It is concerning for us as the Commission that the
scene of the crime that shocked the country and the world and claimed 34 lives,
has allegedly not been properly attended to.
We are equally concerned that the
IDIP has not been quick enough to take steps to protect evidence that will
become necessary in the investigation, as we would be naive to expect the
police to investigate themselves properly.
We call on those responsible,
especially the law enforcers, to ensure that the area of the crime scene is
treated as such - a crime scene - until every bit of evidence has been
exhausted, and those tasked with investigating, including the Inter-Ministerial
Team, have physically visited the area where this crime was committed.
Furthermore, the SAHRC also
proposes that local and provincial structures should be involved in the
investigation as they are the people most directly affected by the incident.
The SAHRC will continue to
monitor the situation until those tasked with investigating the situation make
their pronouncements, and the grieving families have received answers."
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