‘We have done enough’ – solicitor general gives update on Marikana litigation

‘We have done enough’ – solicitor general gives update on Marikana litigation

Solicitor general Ronald Pandelani on Thursday gave an update on litigation matters against the state emanating from the Marikana massacre.

Ronald Pandelani

Wednesday marked 11 years since 44 people lost their lives during a wage strike by miners working at Lonmin’s Wonderkop mine, outside Rustenburg in the North West.

On 9 August 2012, about 3 000 miners embarked on an unprotected strike demanding a living wage of R12,500.

Following a week of deadly attacks that claimed the lives of two officers, two security guards, and six mineworkers were killed – on 16 August 2012 police opened fire on the striking workers, killing 34 of them.

READ:Govt accused of ‘lack of accountability’ as SA marks 11 years since Marikana massacre

Pandelani said more than R330 million had been paid out to claimants through their various legal representatives – these are the Wits Law Clinic, Maluleke Msimang and Associates, Socio-Economic Rights Institute (Seri), Nkome Incorporated and PA Hlahla Attorneys.

“The aggregate total amount R330 445 630.37 and this has been disbursed to the legal representatives mentioned above. That’s the figure that appears on record, has been audited and the figure that we stand with right now.

“These funds have served to fund a spectrum of claims stemming from the Marikana incident.”


•     Wits Law Clinic – R3 995 121 plus costs

•     Seri – R71 230 491

•     Maluleke Msimang and Associates – R77 034 643

•     Nkome Incorporated – R102 305 000

•     PA Hlahla Attorneys – R51 803 863 with some matters relating to gunshot and assault still undergoing verification

Pandelani said Seri; which represented 320 claimants who are part of the families of 36 miners and claimed loss of support, medical expenses, and general damages; had lodged a claim of constitutional damages that was beyond his office’s scope.

“Where a new concept is introduced, such as constitutional litigation, which did not exist at the time of the incident happened, you find a situation where you are applying the law retrospectively."

He said his office did not have the power to use taxpayers’ money to settle a matter that had not been ventilated in court.

“For all intents and purposes until and unless there are any developments, and there is cogent argument that is presented before any court of law about any novel or new issue that arises out of the Marikana litigation – I think we have done enough,” he added.

Pandelani said they were still prepared to sit down and establish the nexus for the state funds to be used to address Seri’s demands over the damages suffered that it says were not covered under common law damages. 


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