WATCH | Marikana litigation will be wrapped up by month-end: solicitor-general
Twenty-four of the 48 claims have been finalised
Solicitor-general Fhedzisani Pandelani says the litigation between the state and victims of the Marikana massacre will be finalised by the end of the month.
Pandelani was commenting during a progress report on Wednesday at the Ronnie Mamoepa Media Centre in Pretoria.
He said of the 48 claims, half had been finalised, and he believed by the end of the month more would have been concluded.
He regretted the litigation taking as long as it did.
“Matters like these should not be delayed inordinately. Delivery issues which make the state liable need to be dealt with [as soon as possible].”
He said this matter has resulted in the creation of five new policies which will ensure no future state litigation would take so long.
“The court is disturbed by the delays.”
He said the matters are before the court because the parties can’t agree on the costs.
The state considered all special damages are payable, but general damages is where the issue is. What is the extent of pain and suffering? This is best left to the experts.Solicitor-general Fhedzisani Pandelani
When this happens there needs to be an umpire and that is when it is put before a dedicated judge president.
Pandelani said there is no dispute about the causation and merits before court. All 48 cases are eligible for some sort of settlement.
“[The cases] remaining relate to quantum. These cases are divided into general damages, which is pain and suffering, and special damages, which is the loss of income by someone who is alive, as well as medical expenses and related aspects.
“The state considered all special damages are payable, but general damages is where the issue is. What is the extent of pain and suffering? This is best left to the experts, which can be actuarial issues or medico-legal issues and so on.”
Where arbitration has failed, the court decides how to award the victim.
“I’m comfortable justice has been done,” Pandelani said.
He stressed the matter was dealing only with cases against the state. He said there were other claims, some against the mine and some against the president, and he could not speak about those.
Apart from special damages and personal injuries, the state has paid just under R76m to 35 families of those killed during the massacre.
About R4m was paid to the University of Witwatersrand, through the Wits Law Clinic, that represented the families of the victims.
The Socio-Economic Rights Institute (Seri) has provided some funding for the representation of families and the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union at the commission.
One survivor was paid just under R3.5m in damages.
Would you like to comment on this article?
Register (it's quick and free) or sign in now.
Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.