Former leader of the National Union of Mineworkers and Secretary General of COSATU, Cyril Ramaphosa, in 1987 in the aftermath of the largest miners' strike in apartheid South Africa. Ramaphosa is now a businessman with interests in mining., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
ANCYL slams Cyril Ramaphosa
Saturday, 27 October 2012 00:00
JOHANNESBURG — Businessman Cyril Ramaphosa has “delivered more than 40 people to their death” and “has the blood of Marikana workers on his hands”.This is according to the ANC Youth League, which has launched a damning attack on Ramaphosa about his alleged e-mails on the Lonmin strike.
Ramaphosa has declined to comment on the e-mails, saying they “form part of the proceedings of the judicial commission of inquiry”.
On Tuesday, at the Farlam Commission it was revealed that Ramaphosa, whose company owns shares in Lonmin, had written e-mails in which he characterised workers’ strike action as “plainly dastardly criminal” that needed “concomitant action to address the situation”.
The e-mails to senior officials at Lonmin were written a day before 34 striking miners were shot dead by police on August 16.
The miners’ lawyer, advocate Dali Mpofu, described the communication that involved Lonmin, Ramaphosa and government officials as “toxic collusion between the state and capital”.
It appears in some of the correspondences that Ramaphosa, who is also an ANC heavyweight, was asked by Lonmin to exercise his political muscle so that the police could remain in Marikana.
In one of the e-mails to Ramaphosa, Lonmin’s chief commercial officer, Albert Jamieson, expresses appreciation at the heavy police presence and emphasised the need for consistency and sustaining the police presence.
He said, however, “our next challenge is sustaining this and ensuring (police) remain and take appropriate action so we can get people back to work. If you can talk to the minister (of mineral resources Susan Shabangu) please could you influence these things with her and encourage her to make time to talk to Roger (Phillimore)?”
In response, Ramaphosa promised Jamieson to “have a discussion with (the minister)” and said the violent strike “cannot be described as a labour dispute” but “plainly dastardly criminal”.
In another e-mail, Ramaphosa briefs Phillimore on his interaction with Shabangu. “I have told (Shabangu) that her silence and inaction about what is happening at Lonmin was bad for her and the government.”
The youth league has reiterated Mpofu’s statement at the commission that the Marikana killings were “premeditated murder” and added that Ramaphosa “has the blood of Marikana workers on his hands”.
“Comrade Cyril’s pre-occupation with the preservation of his monetary interests in Lonmin led him to call for ‘concomitant action’ to deal with the ‘criminal acts’.
“Comrade Cyril must apologise to the families of the injured and the dead for agitating and inciting the (police) against them,” youth league spokeswoman Khusela Sangoni-Khawe said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Marikana miners said they were living in fear and were being intimidated by the police after four more miners who are also witnesses were arrested while travelling in a
bus home from the commission on Tuesday.
Police spokesman Brigadier Thulani Ngubane said the four were arrested for “recent murder cases”.
Witness and Marikana Support Group co-ordinator Chris Molebatsi said heavily armed police trampled on them.