Auckland protest against South Africa shooting
Sat, 18 Aug 2012 6:00p.m.
By Jane Luscombe
Protesters have attacked the South African consulate building in Auckland in response to the shooting dead of 34 striking mineworkers.
They used paint bombs to splatter the walls and windows and stuck a letter on the door for South Africa's president Jacob Zuma.
There was little warning of what was to unfold in the genteel suburb of Epsom.
But protestors had a very clear message for South Africa's government: “blood on your hands”.
The paintballs were a vivid symbol of their anger with the ANC. They blame the ruling party for creating the conditions that led to the massacre of 34 striking mineworkers.
“We have turned up here today to send a message of absolute disgust to the South African president, Jacob Zuma, because we hold him responsible for this massacre,” says protester John Minto.
Many of them, including Mr Minto, have seen it all before, protesting against South Africa in the ‘70s and ‘80s.
“We protested vigorously against apartheid only to find economic apartheid has replaced race-based apartheid. So the people of South Africa are no better off.”
Many South African women would agree. They lost loved ones in Thursday's shooting at the Marikana Mine near Johannesburg and blame the Government.
The killings have brought back the spectre of the Sharpeville massacre in 1960, when 69 anti-apartheid campaigners were shot and killed.
“I never thought in 2012 we would experience the same massacre under the democratically elected Government by ourselves,” says community leader Daniel Modisenyame. “This is a shame.”
Mr Zuma has ordered a commission of inquiry into the violence at the mine owned by British company Lonmin.
“We have gone through painful moments before and we were able to overcome such challenges,” says the South African president.
One challenge will be sorting the victims from the culprits. Earlier in the week, two police officers were battered to death by strikers and two mine security guards burned alive.
“I want to say we did what we could with what we had on the time we had, but we had the responsibility to protect our members,” says national police commissioner Mangwashi Victoria Phiyega.
Two-hundred-fifty-nine people have been arrested since the strikes began. None of them are police officers.
The protestors face a range of charges from public violence and murder to malicious damage to property.
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5/09/2012 5:46:14 p.m.
ssemwanga isaac wrote:
our hearts are sunk as fellow blacks about the tragic marikana massacre, blood bath and killings zones..let zuma & his government come up with a broad approach to this...apartheid stills reins in the black country....let measures be taken on lonmin and wage increament to the mine workers....God bless south africa
2/09/2012 11:06:19 a.m.
These protestors are lucky that they are unlikely to be shot. However imprisonment would be a deserved outcome for their vandalism. The murderous mobs in South Africa should be charged with murder. You cannot take lethal weapons on a protest, charge police, and not expect an outcome. John Minton may work hard as a protestor, but for many years he was on a "sickness benefit", whilst actively promoting civil unrest in NZ and South Africa. He should be held accountable for the untold misery he caused in South Africa.
1/09/2012 9:12:02 a.m.
Its a pure evil acts that need demolishing once and for all, we don't need anymore evil criminals in our world..
Who is to blame but the murderess evil carnival themselves..
Whoever involved in this masscacre should be shot dead on the spot..
19/08/2012 5:24:53 p.m.
Chris Rigby wrote:
@ Grant. It only takes a quick look at the New Zealand History books to see that Minto's actions have had a direct result changing how South Africa does things before.
19/08/2012 11:56:33 a.m.
Is nz any better? wrote:
Don't kid yourselves - the NZ police are not much better. Just see how they attacked the Dotcom residence WITHOUT PROVOCATION, and also the so-called terror raids. Protestors need to start looking closer to home. Plenty of abuses happening here.
19/08/2012 9:32:42 a.m.
the protesters are responsible for the bloodbath.the carried dangerous weapons,ichallanged police and attacked them.the blood of the dead are on their own hands.same old story as before.
19/08/2012 9:28:39 a.m.
When will Mr Minto and his fellow protesters go to South Africa to sort out it's problems, they clearly know what's best from their comfortable living conditions in New Zealand? South Africa needs Mr Minto's righteousness. Perhaps we can get together and buy him a one way ticket.
19/08/2012 9:26:58 a.m.
@Z650STEVE. John Minto works full time as a Union organiser for unite and prior to that was a school teacher. He is a hard worker.
Following is a link to photos of the conditions that the South affrican miners have to work and live under:
19/08/2012 8:28:42 a.m.
As Chris wrote, I can add that I started to watch this segment and I thought "I wonder if Minto is there?" Sure as, who was interviewed? Minto! Has this guy EVER worked a day in his life? A professional protester. I wonder if there is a job like that advertised on Seek?
19/08/2012 8:28:39 a.m.
Trust Minto to be leading a protest where he organised protests for when South Africa was in apartheid and here again when it's now a democratic country! I guess they can never win.Minto knows nothing of what happened there and as stated above earlier in the week two Police Officers were battered to death and two security guards were burned alive!Let South Africa deal with the problem on there own terms.All i see is Minto and his supporters as a group of vandals... i have to wonder... has Minto ever been to Africa to fully understand the dynamics of how it is over there or does he just make assumptions on everything and anything that he knows very little about.
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