Scores of people have gathered at the “koppie” in commemoration of the 7th Anniversary of what has been termed as the “Marikana Massacre”. Seven years since the bloodbath of atleast 34 mineworkers, some workers are hopeful that their fight for better wages from then Lonmin (now Sibanye Stillwater) has finally paid off. Sakhele Zinyo (35), an employee of the mine says although they have not gotten the R 12 500 they were fighting for, the future at the mine seems bright. “We have fought a good fight, and I am sure that those who laid down their lives in 2012, can finally rest in peace knowing that their deaths were not in vain” Zinyo said.
34 mine workers were gunned down on 16th August 2012, during a standoff with police while protesting for higher pay and better living conditions.
The 35 year old who has been working at the mine since 2007, says they have been at the koppie last night to pay tribute to their fallen heroes. “We sang struggle songs in memory of our brothers who died here on 16th August (2012). As you can see, I have not bathed and I will only go home when the event ends” he said with a hoarse voice. Zinyo says the koppie will always stand for their struggle against low wages although he is grateful that the mine has given them proper houses since living in a shack in Wonderkop, near Marikana. “Although we will never be able to erase the tragedy of that fateful day, I am happy that life has improved since then, however small the improvement” he concluded.