Forum 4 Service Delivery councillor Napoleon Webster. PHOTO: ANA

Tlhabane - Forum 4 Service Delivery councillor Napoleon Webster, accused of escaping from lawful custody, briefly appeared in the Bafokeng Magistrate's Court in Tlhabane near Rustenburg on Thursday.

He appeared alongside Lizalise Qikane, Vuyolethu Gunguthwa, Fuzile Mgidi, Sandile Zulu, Malibongwe Witness Qwabe and Zithobile Zekeni who were arrested for aiding him to escape.

Lindokhuhle Mdabe represented Webster, while Andries Nkome represented for Qikane, Gunguthwa, Mgidi, Zulu, Qwabe and Zekeni. 

The defence applied that the bail conditions of the seven to be amended that they should no longer be required to report at the Marikana police station. The court grant the application.

The case was postponed postponed to January 23, for the defence to view the video footage of the incident.

The State alleges that on January 6, at the Bafokeng Magistrate's Court in Tlhabane, Webster was arrested while attending court proceeding involving murder in which Sabata Petros Chale was hacked to death in Marikana West near Rustenburg.

He was handcuffed and put inside a police vehicle, parked near the court entrance, after he was put in a police vehicle, a group of men armed with spears, stones and pangas allegedly advanced towards the police vehicle and attempted to release him.

The police fired warning shots, but the men managed to free Webster, got inside a minibus taxi -- a Mercedes Benz Sprinter and fled the scene.
The police gave chase and fired shot at the vehicles tyres, the group abandoned their vehicle when it deflated  in Tlhabane. 

They were arrested together with Webster, who was still handcuffed.

Zulu was granted R2000 bail and the rest together with Webster were released on R4000 bail each. Their bail was extended.

Webster and 13 other Marikana men were expected to appear in the North West High Court on December 8 in Mogwase, for pre-trial conference for the alleged murder of Chale.