Dlamini-Zuma chased out of Marikana because of 'unresolved issues' - ANCWL
Marikana - The ANC Women’s League says its presidential candidate Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma was chased out of Marikana because of "unresolved" issues between AMCU and the government.
Dlamini-Zuma had planned to lay a wreath on the koppie where 34 striking miners were shot dead by police in 2012.
However, she had to leave without even stepping out of her blue lights vehicle. She was only in the area for a few minutes.
Scores of women in league regalia had gathered on the open space at the foot of the koppie to welcome and accompany Dlamini-Zuma.
However, a handful of men wearing trade union AMCU T-shirts were standing guard.
They declared the area a no-go zone for "ANC leaders and those who were not present on the day of the massacre".
They told the media and ANCWL leaders and supporters to leave.
A nervous looking ANCWL deputy president Sisi Ntombela had to appeal to league members to stop singing and leave the area to avoid a possible crisis.
She was heard warning that they did not want a "repeat" of what happened five years ago. The women and their leaders then retreated.
Dlamini-Zuma's convoy - which included at least 40 minibus taxis that had ferried supporters from nearby Brits - then sped off.
Marikana was part of her week-long presidential campaign trail in the North West province.
Also read: Bapo Ba Mogale royal house endorses Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma
The league's secretary general Meokgo Matuba told News 24 that the wreath laying ceremony could not go ahead because there were "outstanding issues" between AMCU and the government.
"We respect the decision of some AMCU members for requesting the ANCWL to postpone its wreath laying today until there is further engagement on the outstanding issues that the union feels the ANC-led government has not resolved," Matuba said.
She said this was the league’s second visit to the area in two months.
About three weeks ago, the league released what looked like an itinerary that suggested that Dlamini-Zuma had quietly visited the area, but did not give details.
It is understood that she met with some of the widows of the slain miners.
No-go area for ANC leaders
Marikana has essentially been a no-go area for ANC leaders since the police shootings.
Miners are still demanding compensation and for senior leaders to be held to account.
Also, presidential hopeful Cyril Ramaphosa’s attempt at extending an olive branch to the victims and survivors of the massacre were also rejected.
Ramaphosa, who at the time of the massacre was a non-executive director of Lonmin, and who wrote a letter demanding "concomitant action" from authorities in the days before August 16 to end the bloodshed that had already ensued, has been accused of having a hand in the shootings.
In May, he apologised for his actions, but his apology was described as "opportunistic".
Dlamini-Zuma’s visit was widely seen as an attempt to show her might in the presidential race.
Matuba said they would not give up.
"We will continue working with all sectors of the society, including the labour unions, to ensure that there is everlasting peace and harmony in Marikana," Matuba said.