Many people who have watched Miners Shot Down have asked us “what can we do to help the justice campaign?” One of the most important things we can do is to make the 16th August a ‘special’ day, similar to the 21st of March, the day of the Sharpeville Massacre and June 16th when 76 school students were mowed down in Soweto. These two days are national holidays in South Africa sending out a loud message that people will not forget what the apartheid state did on these two dates. We want the 16th August to be a national holiday, reminding people of the massacre of 34 strikers by the South African police and honoring the dead and wounded. This is enormously important to the families who lost loved ones on the 16th August 2012, and to the Lonmin platinum miners who took part in the strike.
We are encouraging people to take action on and around the 16th August, to show support for the Justice Now for Marikana campaign. Many people are already planning film screenings or protests at police stations.
What’s being planned?
So far we know that while the big event will take place at Marikana, by the mountain, marches and protests are being planned by various civil society bodies in Soweto, Vaal, Germiston, Kathlehong, and Johannesburg Central.
NUMSA is planning to hold Political Discussion Forums on the day to discuss Marikana and in some cases joining mobilisations and screenings. Various churches across the country will be holding prayer services. Internationally there are at least 10 events being organized. Full details of all of these will be available from 9th August.
Screenings of Miners Shot Down are taking place in Vaal via the Community Assembly, at Pulp Cinema Stellenbosch (15th), at the Bioscope Independent Cinema in Johannesburg.
The African Arts Institute will be supporting the Justice now for Marikana Campaign by embarking on a series of public art interventions in Cape Town. Ideas on the table include mobile bicycle art, street murals, renaming streets to that of the slain miners and much more. To get involved contact the organisers here.
We are still gathering information on the events taking place and will put out a full list in the week prior to the 16th. If you want to plan an event, or are already organizing something that you want on the newsletter, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org