Marikana – Economic Freedom Fighter (EFF) leader Julius Malema received a rock star welcome when he arrived in Marikana on Friday to press criminal charges against Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa at the local police station.
EFF supporters, who had been waiting for him since 09:00, ululated and whistled when he arrived an hour later than planned.
As he went inside the police station, a crowd of about 300 people gathered outside, dancing and singing in isiZulu, “we never thought President Zuma would handle us like he did”.
Malema was there to lay criminal charges against Ramaphosa, former police minister Nathi Mthethwa, national Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega, former North West police commissioner Zukiswa Mbombo and Lonmin for the role they played in the shooting that left 34 mineworkers dead in August 2012.
The EFF has held the view that Ramaphosa was responsible for the deaths of the mineworkers.
Ramaphosa held shares in Lonmin, among many financial interests he had in various companies, until he was appointed as deputy president in 2014.
The Farlam Commission of Inquiry, investigating the shooting, cleared Ramaphosa and Mthethwa of any wrongdoing.
Malema was expected to lay charges against Ramaphosa and Mthethwa of allegedly conspiring to kill mineworkers and to lay a similar complaint against Lonmin management of not doing enough to protect workers.
He is seeking to have Phiyega and Mbombo charged with ordering police to shoot striking miners.
The Farlam Commission found that Lonmin did not do its best to resolve disputes that arose between itself and its workers.
The police’s public order unit from Potchefstroom was deployed at the Marikana police station to maintain order.