By Kaya 959 News
Six people, including a former North West Deputy SAPS Commissioner, have appeared in court in connection with the deaths of five people in Marikana in 2012.
General Mzondase Mpembe and his co-accused; retired Colonel Salmon Johannes Vermaak, together with Constable Nkosana Mguye, Warrant Officer Masilo Mogale, Warrant Officer Katlego Joseph Sekgweleya and Khazamola Phillip Makhubela, appeared in the North West High Court on Monday.
“The six are facing five counts of murder, attempted murder, defeating the ends of justice and contravening the Commission’s Act by giving false information to the Marikana Commission of Enquiry,” said NPA spokesperson, Henry Mamothame.
He said their reappearance emanates from the five murders in Marikana on 13 August 2012 during a wage strike by Lonmin mine workers.
Two police officers killed
The five deceased include two police officers and three civilians.
The men are accused of the murders of miners Semi Jokanisi and Tembelakhe Mati. Warrant Officer Hendrik Tsietsi Monene, and Warrant Officer Sello Ronnie Lepaauku were also killed.
Mpembe also faces charges for the attempted murder of Zolile Honxo, Zwelitsha Mtshenwa, Muziwanele Mxinwa, Mzoxolo Zukulu and Sibongiseni Miya
Mamothame said several key witnesses had already testified when the matter appeared at the high court in October 2020.
“Among those were a crime scene expert from the SAPS, a CCTV Operator from Lonmin Mines and a Videographer from the SAPS,” he said.
Mamothame said the court went into recess following the defence team cross-examining Colonel Joseph Merafe, Unit Commander in the Public Order Policing in Rustenburg.
The case is set to continue until Friday, 30 July, and the state is expected to call on more witnesses during the course of the trial.
The Marikana Massacre took place in 2012 after workers protested to be paid a minimum wage of over R12 000.
At least 34 miners were killed in the incident that shone the light on police brutality.