His name Motlalepula means ‘one who brings the rain’. This is exactly what happened on the 20 December 2017 when the

family of Comrade Andries Motlalepula Ntshenyeho received their new house. This is the second house built by the AMCU Trust in keeping with their promise to honour the memory of the men slain during the Marikana Massacre of 2012. The ceremony was attended by President Joseph Mathunjwa, General Secretary Jeff Mphahlele, General Treasurer Jimmy Gama, National Organiser Dumisani Nkalishana as well the Lonmin branch leadership.

A blessed morning

Comrade Andries’ widow, Mmathabang Ntshenyeho, expressed her gratitude. Visibly emotional, with tears streaming down her face, she said, “When President Mathunjwa pledged to build houses for the families of slain mineworkers during the Marikana massacre, I did not believe that I would be amongst the people to receive one.”

The three-bedroom house has an en-suite master bedroom, a kitchen, a bathroom and a lounge with a fire place. She explains that she struggled to see the light as she had become used to a life of poverty. “I lived in a three-roomed shack with my five children, Thabang, Nthabiseng, Mamokete, Moeketsi, and Refiloe. Whenever it rained, the shack would be filled with water and we would have to move the furniture or it would get damaged. I will no longer have sleepless nights every time it the rains.” Addressing President Mathunjwa, she said, “President Mathunjwa you know that as a family we don’t have gold or silver that we can offer to show our gratitude, but we can only keep you in our prayers and continue to ask God to give you strength and wisdom to finish what you have started.”

A matter of dignity

When he took to the podium to address
the Ntshenyeho family and the media, President Mathunjwa said that AMCU remains committed to the promise made by the AMCU Trust. “We recognise that this house will not compare with the contribution that Comrade Andries may have made or to the love he had for his family, but this will be the embodiment of the wish he had to one day build a proper house for his wife and children.”

Quest for justice

“Comrade Andries’ contribution towards the struggle in emancipating the working class will live on forever. We are proud to report to Comrade Andries Ntshenyeho that, because of him and other Lonmin workers who stood up against monopoly capital, workers in the Platinum Belt are now able to build their livelihoods, to send money back home to their loved ones, and send children to school,” the President continued. He added that, although there are no public celebrations of their heroic acts, Comrade Andries and his fellow slain miners are represented in the same statues as other great revolutionaries of our land, including Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe, Steve Bantu Biko, Chris Hani and Solomon Mahlangu. “AMCU has managed to raise workers’ salaries from R4 500 to a minimum salary of R11 500 in three years.