Mr Siphamandla Makhanya, an important leader of the current national strike action in the platinum mines, together with his comrade Jacob Khoza, are in jail on fabricated murder charges. This is part of the bosses’ and the state’s strategy to break the 5-week long strike by platinum miners demanding a living wage of R12 500. These arrests are in addition to the Anglo bosses’ unprecedented R590 million law suit against the union AMCU.
Makhanya’s arrest is an to attempt to neutralise a key leader of the strike, and to remove him from the national negotiations. It is a case of the police intervening on the side of the bosses, as when 34 miners were shot dead in Marikana. The charges against Makhanya are blatant lies because on the day and time that the incident for which he was arrested took place he was addressing strikers in a mass meeting captured on national television!
The abuse of state structures to protect and promote bosses’ greed for profit must end.
The Gauteng Strike Support Committee is calling upon all trade unions, social movements and working class youth formations to demand that the charges against Makhanya and Khoza are dropped. This abuse of the justice system by the capitalist class will be used against other struggles and strikes. Defeat of the platinum strike and the decimation of AMCU will be a defeat for the struggle of the working class as a whole.
We call upon all working class formations to:
- attend and send messages of support during Makhanya’s court appearance on Wednesday 5 March 2014 at the Rustenburg Court
- send letters to the Minister of Police, the Minister of Labour and the Minister of Justice protesting against this abuse of the judicial system
- Donate to the Release Makhanya Campaign defence fund.
For more information contact Bheki Buthelezi 0604578971
Release Makhanya Campaign