Johannesburg (Agenzia Fides) – “If these structural issues are not adequately addressed, we shall soon have another Marikana, if we continue to pursue a brand of mining economy that puts profit before people”, warned His Exc. Mgr. Abel Gabuza, Bishop of Kimberley and President of the “Justice and Peace” Commission, followimg the release of a report by a Commission of Inquiry appointed to look into the Marikana massacre (see Fides 26/06/2015).

From 11 to 16 August 2012, during a miners stike in which miners were demanding a pay rise, there were serious incidents that led to the death of 44 people, the wounding of 70 others and the arrest of about 250. The most serious incident dates back to August 16, 2012, when South African police intervened firing live bullets at thousands of striking miners at South Africa’s Marikana platinum mine, killing 34 people. The Commission ascertained that 17 people were hit in the back while they were being chased by the police.

“Our hearts are with the families who lost their loved ones and are struggling to find healing and closure as they try to make sense of the findings of the Marikana report”, said Mgr. Gabuza. “There is also a need for healing in the whole Country from the culture of structural violence”, concluded the Bishop, making an implicit reference to the latest xenophobic violence that have shaken some major South African cities (see Fides 17/06/2015). (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 02/07/2015)