“Ramaphosa Unfairly Vilified in Respect of Marikana”: KZN ANC Member


An ANC Member who has withheld his name says Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa is being unfairly vilified by many in the ANC. Ramaphosa, a shareholder at Lonmin Platinum mine at the time of the Marikana shooting, had sent an email to his board asking for “concomitant action” in the lead up to the shooting. The writer argues that President Jacob Zuma, former Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa and Lonmin should be held responsible. 

  • All arguments people are raising about Ramaphosa relating to Marikana failed the legal test. We should all accept this.
  • Cyril was not an official in government when he wrote the email asking for “concomitant action” in Marikana during August 2012.
  • He had equal powers to Minister Nathi Mthethwa, South African Police Minister at the time, in terms of the leadership and powers in the ANC.
  • Mthethwa had a direct influence on SAPS and therefore had direct power and influence over the SAPS. Ramaphosa didn’t.
  •  When civilians or private persons are in dispute, especially over matters of national interest, it is incumbent upon the government to intervene.
  • The government did not intervene and let us come to the question of political responsibility, which is an argument that I believe was raised by our own comrades in KZN.
  • The President is the political head of the ANC, which Ramaphosa was it’s additional member.
  • The President holds all Executive Powers in terms of the Constitution of the Republic and ministers serve under him. In other words he holds full responsibility for the conduct of representatives in  government.
  • There is nowhere in the defence of the police who opened fire on the Marikana miners where they say they conspired with the deputy president.
  • Police acted because of reasons known to them and not at the behest of Ramaphosa.
  • The SAPS interpreted the word concomitant action differently. However it was not for Ramaphosa to tell them which state resources to use. All he wanted was the situation to be brought under control.
  • Last point which many will regard as lacking evidence and treat it like a conspiracy theory but I’ll say it as it’s akin to blaming Cyril without evidence, is the role of AMCU’s President Joseph Mathunjwa.
  • Mathenjwa was fighting his axing from NUM using miners’ genuine issues to his benefit/advantage.
  • Cyril in the months leading to the massacre, presumably, was using telephonic communication as a method of communicating with police or any other officials of government or state.
  • Had Cyril not written anything, his name was going to be muddied.
  • After government’s delays which ran into months effective intervention, police shot people down.
  • The propaganda is now that “Cyril killed miners” so that he’s being discredited. And with that comes in a new narrative that “South Africa needs a woman president”.
  • Why did Cyril have to carry the burden of the state?


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  1. My Cde
    Here are the reasons I feel Cde Ramaphosa failed the murdered miners.

    Ramaphosa an ex union leader who fought for workers for years, he more than anyone else, would have not written such a letter. That’s the starting point, more specific that he was conflicted as a shareholder of the Lonmin.

    Secondly during that time he chose to flash around with his wealth buying buffalo bulls for R18 million
    A demonstration of wealth done by white people.

    he could have donated that money towards the living wage of his employees, which is what those people died for.

    Therefore while he did not give the order to kill, he’s equally guilty for these lost of lives.

    He was more than able to have resolved the issue, but chose not to, but to use his political influence to government, for them to act harshly with the strikers. They also must be prosecuted.

    Cyril must take responsibility for it, and should not be defended, he is equally guilty!.

    1. To put it frankly, for Cyril Ramaphosa it was more about destroying the rival union (Amcu) against NUM,at whatever cost.Shame on him!

  2. For the mere fact that CR17 only want to apologise to the people of Marikana ONLY now speaks volumes of his intentions. Had he apologised then, it would have been a different matter. And you can apologise because of the wrong(s)you have done.

  3. With all due respect, we need to look at things in a reality and not just in a way we wish they should happen. We have all been too emotional regarding the Marikana Matter. Let’s take things into both our hearts and brains, and only then we will talk sense and we will build our nation.

    ‘Ramaphosa unfairly vilified in respect of Marikana’, says who? You are writing from the point of hatred in this matter and not that of trying to bring peace. On the day of Marikana massacre too many dangerous episodes unfolded:
     The marchers were armed.
     The marchers used some traditional muthi to conceal themselves from the police and as a result had that muthi worked according to their desires, the police would have been massacred…without even seeing who was attacking them.
     Police shot down people? Yes it is true. They shot down armed people who would have done the same to them (actually did the same to a certain level) and being in disguise. That is called defense! Too many people die in this country in the hands of armed marchers. Why arm yourself when going to a march for your rights. For too long we have allowed weapons to speak out for our needs instead of us speaking and stating facts. In no way I am condoning the killing of the mine workers and on the same breath I am not agreeing with them going to a march armed and practicing witchcraft for that matter.
     A number of police officers were killed and injured.
     Cyril Ramaphosa is one of the owners of the mine. And yes he had the right to protect his business like any other South African business owner would have done. On the same, he is not clean. He is to be questioned as much.
     Ramaphosa took this long to apologise to the families of the slain. Had it not been for Mama Winnie; he would not have apologised even up to this point. (Who knows?) Now that he wants to be a president and is trying to buy the votes of the people…he sees it fit to apologise. Get me right for the sake of the votes of the people; apologising becomes a right thing to do? Excuse me!

    You say: The propaganda is now that “Cyril killed miners” so that he’s being discredited. And with that comes in a new narrative that “South Africa needs a woman president”.
    No, you are very wrong. This has nothing to do with Ramaphosa and whatever he did or did not do…it has to do with the fact that it is a right time for a Woman President in South Africa because women are ready to govern and we have women who are qualifying for the presidency position. NDZ’s service in the struggle for the liberation of this country speaks volumes. Do not undermine the women of this country and their role in the struggle by trying to raise shaking matters with no roots. Have respect for the women. Have some respect for your mother who bore and raised you. You don’t expect women to remain babies and subjects of discrimination for the rest of their lives in our country. This country needs civilization and without emancipating and unshackling the women; we will always remain an uncivilized nation.

    1. It is satisfying to note that we agreeing that the situation was volatile for both parties and action needed to be taken to contain. Reference is made to the findings of the Marikana commission “While the Commission does not disagree with what is said by the evidence
      leaders in this regard it must be borne in mind that there is no reason to
      believe that the SAPS would have reacted to the events during the period 11
      to 16 August any differently if Mr Ramaphosa (and for that matter Mr
      Zokwana) had not contacted Minister Mthethwa. In view of the serious
      crimes committed by some of the strikers, the fact that they were not willing
      to lay down their dangerous weapons, despite the fact that their continuing
      possession thereof was an offence, and the daily coverage in the media of
      what was happening at Marikana, it was inevitable that the SAPS would
      bring in extra members in an attempt to bring the situation under control and
      restore law and order. It was also inevitable in the circumstances that
      Minister Mthethwa would have been in touch with the National
      Commissioner and Lieutenant General Mbombo to keep himself informed as
      to what was happening and to satisfy himself that the SAPS were adequately
      dealing with the situation. The Commission is of the view that it cannot be
      said that Mr Ramaphosa was the „cause of the massacre‟.

      Having referenced the above, I would want to touch on the issue of an ANC presidential race ( which is killing the same thing people want lead). It is unfortunate to contest that anyone is of the opinion that we are not ready for a woman president. In fact, the ANC has more than one capable woman to lead it ( and hopefully the country if it wins the elections). Hon Dr Nkosazana Zuma is a credible leader and so is Cde Lindiwe Sisule, Mam Winnie & Mam Mbete etc.

      Challenge to our movement (mine as am not sure about you) is to advance one’s candidate without mudslinging the competition. It helps no one (not the ANC at the very least) to tarnish a leader who is expected to lead the society because such an image is inherently linked to the ANC that we are all fighting to lead. We will be left with a shelf.

      I for one have the greatest respect for women due to some personal experiences ( which we not gonna get into) and does not for a second doubt any of the female leaders being touted. Be it Cyril or Nkosazana, we hope to resuscitate the movement but lets stop with the propaganda as it will come to bite us and will be left holding onto what “used to be” a glorious movement.

      As for apologising, there is no leader in their right might who doesn’t feel sad at what happened in Marikana and if that amounts to an admission of guilt on any person, then we will soon run out of leaders to account for societal issues. Having said that, I respectfully disagree with your assertion that Cyril’s apology is meant to garner public sympathy in order to ascend into the throne. Surely I can google a few more leaders who apologised for the incident.

      We need a more united movement in order to address the needs of the marginalised and having a go at each other will only serve to dismantle us and hand over power to the opposition.


  4. I agree with you Mbula..i don’t like Cyril but to put the blame on him for Marikana its not on..AMCU needs to take some blame,Lonmin and the Police..

  5. Well described.. Unfortunately people are very selective in their reporting just to suit their own agenda. It is conveniently forgotten that 10 or so lives were lost prior to CR’s email and only ignorant people will argue that such a state of affair didn’t warrant police intervention.

    When we commemorate the Marikana incident, we often speak of the widows of miners…has it ever occurred to those pushing such a narrative that people killed prior the 34 miners also have families. No one seems to want to point a figure at the disorder by AMCU.

    The Marikana incident is very sad and should never be repeated but apportioning the blame on Cyril only serves a narrow agenda and it will happen again if we don’t face the facts on the table such as the role of unions in organising their members in an orderly manner as well as crowd control tactics by the security cluster.

    It’s very sad to play politics when lives were lost and its very narrow minded which is not sustainable.

    Adv Dali tried painfully to make it stick on Cyril and he didn’t succeed. Cde Dali is no junior advocate and his arguments were not supported by facts but by hearsay and conspiracy theories.

    Africa, let’s be honest with situations and not play politics…else we risk the repeat.

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