Bishop Jo Seoka has asked the South African government to declare August 16 a national holiday in honor of the 34 mineworkers killed by police in a 2012 labor strike.
The Bishop of Pretoria, the Rt. Rev. Jo Seoka, has asked the South African government to declare August 16 a national holiday in honor of the 34 mineworkers killed by police in a 2012 labor strike. Bishop Seoka will submit the petition to the Home Affairs Ministry government last week on behalf of the Marikana Support Group, the Sowetan reported on 16 January 2015. On 16 Aug 2012, 34 striking mineworkers were killed and 70 wounded in a clash with police in a dispute over wages. Ten people, including two police officers and two security guards were killed in clashes in the days before the shooting. “It is appropriate to campaign for August 16 to be a public holiday. Those workers did not die accidentally, they were massacred,” said Bishop Seoka. “We must honour those fallen workers… Their children will know their parents died for a good cause.” Bishop Seoka played a prominent public role in the dispute, and has been a prominent voice in support of the miners.