newsANA reports that North West premier Supra Mahumapelo said on Sunday that poverty was the root cause of the Marikana tragedy four years ago.  

He said at the launch of the provincial reconciliation, healing, and renewal initiative at Wonderkop:  “Poverty forced people to work in the mines, some come from Zimbabwe, Lesotho, the Eastern Cape and other provinces, and neighbouring countries to work in Rustenburg mines.”  Thirty-four Lonmin mineworkers were shot dead nearby on 16 August 2012 after police fired shots at them.  Mahumapelo said that as part of the initiative, all churches and mining companies would be required to sign a pledge.  He stated:  “We want to bring unity and reconciliation within the province.  It is very important to heal the past wounds...  The trade unions – the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) and the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) – will [also] be engaged to reconcile.”

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