University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Centre of Governance and Human Rights Events > The Marikana Commission of Inquiry: Investigations and Accountability for Right to Life Violations CGHR in conversation with the lead counsel for the Human Rights Commission, Toby Fisher

The Marikana Commission of Inquiry: Investigations and Accountability for Right to Life Violations CGHR in conversation with the lead counsel for the Human Rights Commission, Toby Fisher

Add to your list(s) Download to your calendar using vCal

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Sharath Srinivasan.

CGHR in conversation with the lead counsel for the South African Human Rights Commission, Toby Fisher

The events at the Lonmin platinum mine in Marikana, South Africa, in August 2012 made headlines around the world, and caused a significant challenge to the ANC Government in South Africa. Shortly after the fateful events in Rustenberg, President Jacob Zuma announced an inquiry headed by a former Supreme Court of Appeals Judge, tasked to “investigate matters of public, national and international concern arising out of the tragic incidents at the Lonmin Mine in Marikana.”

In order to avoid inevitable overlap between the Commission of Inquiry and the South Africa Human Rights Commission’s own mandated investigation into the events, the SAHRC elected to participate in the process of the Commission of Inquiry. As the SAHRC ’s lead counsel during the proceedings of the Commission, Toby Fisher is well placed to comment on the strengths and weaknesses of the investigation, its conclusions, and its role in pursuing justice for the victims.

Commissions of Inquiry have come to play a significant role in the response of several African States to incidents involving violations of the right to life over the past decades. Some argue they present a forum in which victims can have a greater voice and can more readily contribute to reconciliation or the rebuilding of public trust. Others argue they are smokescreens behind which perpetrators evade meaningful accountability for their crimes.

In this conversation, CGHR ’s Thomas Probert will explore with Toby the extent to which either of these assessments might fairly be attributed to the Marikana Commission, and together, based on their ongoing work to revise the UN Manual of the Investigation of Extra-Legal Executions, both will reflect on the characteristics of a successful accountability mechanism for violations of the right to life.

Speakers:

Toby Fisher is a London-based barrister with an extensive experience of international human rights law litigation. In addition to his role as lead counsel for the South African Human Rights Commission before the Marikana Commission of Inquiry he has worked on death penalty appeals in Sierra Leone, and is currently acting as a business and human rights consultant to the Centre for Applied Legal Studies in Johannesburg.

Thomas Probert is a Research Associate at CGHR , and works as a research consultant to the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, based at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva. He is also a senior researcher within a team based at the University of Pretoria currently undertaking a comparative study of national Commissions of Inquiry in Africa.

This talk is part of the Centre of Governance and Human Rights Events series.

Tell a friend about this talk:

This talk is included in these lists:

Note that ex-directory lists are not shown.

 

© 2006-2019 Talks.cam, University of Cambridge. Contact Us | Help and Documentation | Privacy and Publicity