SABC and etv break promises to Marikana widows

SABC and etv break promises to Marikana widows

Thirteen months on and SABC and etv will still not screen Emmy award winning documentary, Miners shot Down. As congratulatory messages continue to flow from all directions including political parties, members ask why the SABC and etv will still not show the documentary to all South Africans.

On the eve of the second anniversary of the Marikana Massacre last year, widows and family members of those killed in Marikana, travelled from the Farlam Commission of Inquiry to the studios of SABC and etv.

Along with amandla .mobi members, they hand delivered over 4000 signatures demanding they screen Marikana documentary Miners Shot Down. Both SABC spokesperson Kaiser Kganyago and etv group head Monde Twala accepted the petition and promised widows, family members and activists they would respond with an answer by the 15th September 2014.

Mme Ntsenyeho with other Marikana Massacre widows handing 4000 names to SABC spokesperson Mr Kganyago, on 15th August 2015, demanding the screen Miners Shot Down

Both the public broadcaster and free to air channel failed to keep their promise to the widows and over 4000 campaign signatories.

“SABC spokesperson Kaiser Kganyago ignored all phone calls, voice messages, SMSs and emails from our members demanding he honours his commitment. The SABC has failed to act in the interest of the public and TV license holders, and ensure the stories of those killed in our first ‘post-apartheid’ massacre were told”

With Miners Shot Down winning not only an Emmy, but two South African Film and Television awards (SAFTA) which the SABC sponsors, pressure is mounting on the SABC and etv to explain why they have not screened the documentary. While etv did eventually respond and allege they would meet with Miners Shot Down Director Rehad Desai, there is still no firm date to screen the documentary over a year later.

Asked why they want SABC and etv to screen Miners Shot Down, Marikana widow Manthabang Ntsenyeho explains:

"I think it is important that the story of the Massacre be shown on TV so that everyone can know what happened at Marikana. Our husbands died unexpectedly. They never got sick, they were killed. They were the providers in our homes because as wives, we were unemployed. Now our kids are left without fathers. I want the movie [Miners Shot Down] to be shown on TV because most people have access to TV and we all watch SABC and e-TV”

This morning SABC spokesperson Kaiser Kganyago claimed he had communicated with the Miners Shot Down director Rehad Desai saying they could not show the documentary as “at the time it would not be prudent to do it because the Marikana Commission was still on” [1]. has slammed this response: “Mr Kganyago shook the hands of Marikana widows and promised them a response, they represented themselves, not Rehad Desai. His duty was to communicate to the widows and TV license holders, not Rehad Desai. But to also claim that they couldn’t screen Miners Shot Down during the Farlam Commission of Inquiry, amounts to censorship. Perhaps Mr Kganyago does not realise that the Farlam Commission of Inquiry over, and President Zuma has released the report. We’re still waiting”’s campaign to get Miners Shot Down screened has now reached over 5000 signatures.

[1] SABC Denies saying ‘no’ to airing ‘Miners Shot Down’