Forum 4 Service Delivery (F4SD) councillor Napoleon Webster can now focus on his job after criminal charges against him were dismissed, the party said on Wednesday.
Party leader Mbahare Kekana said they were happy Webster was discharged from the case in which he faced murder charges.
Webster was arrested together with 13 other men in connection with the 2016 murder of Sabata Petros Chale in Marikana near Rustenburg in the North West.
Judge Ronnie Hendricks dismissed murder charges against Webster and five others at the North West High Court sitting in Mogwase on Tuesday. This was after defence lawyers applied for a discharge, arguing that state witnesses did not present credible evidence that could lead to the conviction of the accused.
The state conceded that there was not enough evidence against the six, but maintained it has a strong case against the remaining eight accused.
As a result, Mdlondozi Fundiwo, Webster, Aphindile Pungone, Gift Luveli, Nkululeko Msithwa and Luvo Soyizwaphi were discharged from the case, while Aubrey Seitsang, Sibonile Sobopha, Herbert Baqhesi, William Nyenyane, Samson Gqwetani, Nkosindiphile Nziyose, Sivuyile Qasha and Mzolisi Mbulana will stand trial for the murder of Chale.
Sabata was killed, allegedly by the group, on December 8, 2016, in Marikana West, over the allocation of low cost (RDP) houses.
“Comrade Webster almost spent a year in prison for a murder which he didn’t commit. We are of the popular belief that the Justice has taken the right decision and set free the leader of our people,” said Kekana.
He said charges against Webster were political as he was the voice of mineworkers in Marikana.
“F4SD will further assist Napoleon to sue the State for wrongful arrest. We will further take upon ourselves to assist other politically charged similar citizens such as the eight Marikana activists whose lawyer pulled out of the case…”
The lawyer representing the remaining eight men pulled out of the case due to nonpayment of legal fees.
The case was postponed to June 25 for the men to sort their legal problems. If they have not secured a lawyer when the trial resumes, they will be forced to conduct their own defence.