Marikana Commission: A cop who stands for truth and accountability

It’s hard to imagine a story that could snatch headlines from Oscar Pistorius and Nkandla, but Lieutenant Colonel Salmon Vermaak has put the Marikana massacre back on the front page. The air-wing commander had a bird’s eye view of the events and having broken ranks with the top brass, he’s now flying solo. The dissident cop describes a Marikana operation of incompetence, brutality and cover-ups that reach the highest levels of South African policing.

Mpembe has denied he gave an instruction to fire teargas, despite reports it was his orders that sparked the violence. When Vermaak and officers at the scene confronted him about it during an SAPS meeting in Potchefstroom to compile their evidence, the deputy commissioner threatened to lock them up for defeating the ends of justice. Meeting the mineworkers without the proper equipment was unsafe, said Vermaak.