Rights institute to take Marikana general damages dispute with state to court

The Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa (Seri) attorney Zamantungwa Khumalo says there has been no consensus reached between the institute and government in negotiations over the damages due to the families of the 34 mineworkers killed by police in Marikana in 2012.

While the state made the first round of payments to the families in August 2018 relating to the loss of support, Khumalo says there is a deadlock in discussions over general damages.

She says the state is not willing to budge and that the institute will now be taking the matter to court.

We believe that the families are entitled to more than what the state is willing to give, especially because there are families who were unable to receive [compensation] for loss of support because, for instance, the children of the deceased were adults.

Zamantungwa Khumalo, Attorney - Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa

We believe that the offer that is currently made by the state to the families is completely ridiculous and it just shows a lack of understanding of the trauma that the different family members have gone through... an offer of R 500,000 for the whole family, it is completely ridiculous.

Zamantungwa Khumalo, Attorney - Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa

Social activist and documentary filmmaker Rehad Desai describes the government's actions as "utter cruelty" being shown by the state.

This is a negotiation that has been going on for three or possibly four years and the state attorney's are dragging their feet, they don't seem to care about the families or the deep scars this has placed on our nation.

Rehad Desai, Social activist and documentary filmmaker

This culture of impunity where people can get away with breaking a strike for a living wage with such violent means really hurt us as a nation.

Rehad Desai, Social activist and documentary filmmaker

What we have seen is much more interference since then by private interests in our democracy - we saw it with the Guptas, Bosasa and all the campaigns around donations and buying votes... our democracy is on a knife-edge. We need to see prosecutions.

Rehad Desai, Social activist and documentary filmmaker

Click on the link below to hear the full conversation...


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