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Marikana miners file R1bn claim against govt

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The miners arrested and injured at Marikana launched a civil claim against government totalling more than R1bn on Friday, their lawyer said.

“The team led by Advocate Dali Mpofu, SC, launched the civil suit on behalf of 275 miners,” the miners’ lawyer Andries Nkome told News24.

“The suit launched is for financial compensation for unlawful arrest, unlawful detention as well as malicious prosecution. The civil suit is against the Presidency, against the National Prosecuting Authority, and against the SAPS.”

He said, on average, they were claiming R3m per mine worker, but in some cases compensation was somewhat more.

“Over and above that, we issued a summons on behalf of the miners who were injured during that fateful week in Marikana,” he said.

They have more than 50 civil suits for the injuries sustained at that time, including one for injuries resulting in a miner’s permanent disability.

The compensation sought by the injured miners averaged “a bit higher” than R3m.

The civil claims were filed in the High Court in Pretoria.

On Tuesday morning, families of the 37 mineworkers killed at Marikana filed their own claim in the same court against Police Minister Nathi Nhleko.

The families are represented by the Socio-Economic Rights Institute of SA (SERI), the Legal Resources Centre (LRC) and Wits Law Clinic.

They are claiming compensation for:

– Loss of financial support;

– Grief and emotional shock caused by the deaths of their family members and caregivers;

– Medical expenses of psychological and psychiatric treatment;

– Loss of family life and parental care.

“The families also claim a formal apology from the minister of police for the loss of their loved ones,” the SERI and LRC said.

“An apology will bring much needed closure to the families who feel they have been abandoned by the South African government.”

On August 16 2012, police shot dead 34 striking mine workers at Lonmin’s mine in Marikana, in the North West. The remaining three were killed on August 13, among 10 killed in the week prior to the main shooting incident. News24


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