Watch The Trailer For South African Marikana Massacre Documentary 'Mama Marikana'

Watch the trailer for 'Mama Marikana,' the forthcoming documentary feature from filmmaker Aliki Saragas about the Marikana Massacre of 2012.

On August 16th 2012, an elite unit of the South African police force opened fire on a group of protesting miners employed by the Lonmin Platinum Mine in Marikana, leaving thirty four dead, seventy eight wounded and over two hundred and fifty in police custody. These miners were taking part in a wildcat strike to protest poor wages and a history of unsatisfactory labor conditions at the lucrative mining operation. South African media outlets dubbed the incident the Marikana Massacre, as it was the largest use of lethal police force since the Sharpeville Massacre of 1960, and in the days following the mass murder, public outcry from the victim's families lamabasted the administration of President Jacob Zuma for its failure to account for those dead, wounded or incarcerated during the skirmishes. In addition to the initial disregard of the lives lost during the clashes, national media coverage ignored the rippling effect of the trauma among the women of Marikana who were left with no support from the media or government officials.

Mama Marikana, a forthcoming documentary from director Aliki Saragas as a part of her masters degree at the University of Cape Town, traces the mobilization of the mothers, wives, sisters, and daughters of the Marikana miners and their efforts to rebuild the ravaged community in the wake of the violent police attacks. The film, whose trailer we first spotted via We-Are-Awesome, seeks to give a voice to the voiceless by following five senior female members of the community over a two year period from August 16, 2012, to August 16, 2014, and chronicling their tireless social justice work through the Marikana women's group, Sikhala Sonke (We Cry Together).

Watch the film's melancholy trailer below, and read a statement from the filmmakers which sheds more light on the impulse behind the creation of the documentary :

Mama Marikana [...] is an exploration of the politics of voice, and who has a right to speak and who doesn’t. It is also a story about the everyday, the small moments and the continuation of lives that are not in the media's spotlight. The film allows those who have been forgotten to speak and also seeks to re-humanise them in a way that society, government and their employers have not achieved. Although the media has highlighted the atrocities inflicted on the miners, the cries of the women, who continue to suffer, are not heard. This film deals with space as traumatic memory, and explores memory and identity in space. It deals with the archive as both a path into traumatic memory, as well as a reminder of how space carries scars. The film documents the growth and perseverance of the women of the community and Sikhala Sonke, and how they are a solid force, fighting for the benefit of their community and for the female voice to be heard.

H/T We-Are-Awesome

Photo by Meztli Yoalli Rodríguez

Dying Lagoons Reveal Mexico’s Environmental Racism

In the heart of a traditionally Black and Indigenous use area in Southwest Mexico, decades of environmental destruction now threatens the existence of these communities.

On an early morning in September 2017, in a little fishing village in the Pacific coast of Oaxaca, called Zapotalito, thousands of dead fish floated on the surface of the Chacahua-Pastoría lagoons. A 7.1-magnitude earthquake, which rattled Mexico City on September 19, was felt as far down as Zapotalito, and the very next morning, its Black, Indigenous and poor Mestizo residents, who depend on the area's handful of lagoons for food and commerce, woke up to an awful smell and that terrible scene of floating fish.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox


Watch Focalistic & Vigro Deep’s New Music Video For ‘Ke Star’

The 'Lockdown Level 1 anthem' has come to life through fire visuals.