The National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) says it rejects the "un-apology" made by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa in the explanation of his role in the events in 2012 that led to the death of 34 Marikana miners after police opened fire on protesting strikers at the Lonmin mine.
Joseph Mathunjwa‚ president of the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu), which led the strike‚ has also rejected Ramaphosa’s apology.
The former businessman and trade unionist said at the weekend that he was willing to visit with Marikana miners at the advice of ANC stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. He said messages he sent to Lonmin management calling for "action" before the shooting were meant to prevent further disaster.
Irvin Jim‚ Numsa’s general secretary‚ said in a statement that "Ramaphosa’s apology, nearly five years later is no more than empty words".
Among the reasons the union cited for this assertion is that Ramaphosa had the power as a Lonmin board member to make decisions "which could have vastly improved the lives of the miners‚ but he chose not to [use it]".