3 Years on The Marikana FIGHT Continues. A freshly graded gravel road and a few communal water taps are the only changes Marikana miners have seen since 2012. Poverty and unemployment still stalk the community.
For the miners who were on the koppie on the fateful day three years ago, very little has changed. They still earn far below the R12500 basic salary they fought for and their colleagues died for.
Thousands of workers from surrounding mines flocked to the memorial service at Marikana yesterday to pay tribute to their 34 colleagues killed when police opened fire at strikers who had gathered to demand better pay and working conditions.
Their protest was in the form of song . “Silawulwa yisibhanxa eSouth Africa”, which loosely translated means “We are ruled by an idiot in South Africa.”
Police stood by watching miners, clad in blankets under the blazing sun, hoist their knobkerries into the air and taunt the authorities in song.
It was still the refrain as political leaders took to the stage to address the miners yesterday.
Mjungwa Ntsele, who took part in the strike three years ago, said the miners would never abandon their struggle for a living wage.
“We cannot relax until we see change. The bosses will finally give in to our demands. And we will make sure that those who died did not die in vain. Our battle now is against retrenchments,” Ntsele said.
Nosihle Ngeyi, whose husband, Michael, was one of those killed, said national police commissioner Riah Phiyega should be charged for the deaths.