MAC: Mines and Communities

Assault at Sterkwater

Published by MAC on 2007-02-15

Assault at Sterkwater

Comment from Jubilee South Africa

24th February 2007:

This is a quick update on what happened after the arrests on Tuesday, 20 February in Sterkwater, north of Mokopane. Twenty nine people in total were arrested from Sterkwater, and 5 were released the following day without being charged - these people include the Nduna, Isaac Pila and a local councillor, Phillipos Mello. Out of those 5 that were released,

At least 2 people had been taken to the bush by police with no nametags and they were kicked and beaten with cables. The activists plan to file charges against these policemen - including assault and wrongful arrest. The other 24 were eventually released on bail and are expected to be in court on 3 April. Fifteen additional people have arrests warrants, but the community's attorney and the prosecutor's office negotiated that the other 15 will not be detained but will appear in court in April with the other 24 people who were arrested and detained on Tuesday.

The community is not deterred at all from its goal of holding Anglo Platinum and its Section 21 companies accountable for human rights violations, destruction of their livelihoods and culture, and the institutionalised intimidation, violence, and harassment at the hands of the South African Police.

The abuse continues to shock us and we urge all interested parties and the media to investigate these human rights violations before this situation continues to escalate.

If you would like to visit any of the platinum affected areas in Limpopo or North West, we strongly encourage this because it is the best way to hear directly from the community members themselves what they experience at the hands of Anglo Platinum and the police.

If you would like more information or if you are interested in visiting the
platinum areas, please contact: or 082 398 6882,
Brand Nthako at 082 628 1362, Phillopos Dolo (Mapela area) 084 023 6237,
Emmanuel Makgoga (Maandagshoek, the Tubatse municipality - near
Burgersfort), Thusi Rapoo (Ga-Luka, North West) or Lucas Mekgoe (Ga-Luka,
North West) 073 443 5699.

Anne Mayher
Jubilee South Africa

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