Marikana, North West -
The case against 260 Lonmin mineworkers was postponed to next week by the Ga-Rankuwa Magistrate's Court on Monday.
Magistrate Esau Bodigelo put the matter off to August 27 for further investigation. All would remain in custody, except one man who was in hospital.
The miners were arrested during violent protests at Lonmin's platinum mine in Marikana, North West, on Thursday. The faced charges of public violence.
Prosecutor Bafana Tlahgwane asked for a seven-day postponement, saying the ongoing investigations were wide and complex. The investigation would allow the State to unravel what happened at the mine. Additional charges could be brought later.
He said the probe would be complicated by the fact that some of the miners were immigrants.
For someone to be released on bail, the home address had to be verified by the State, Tlahgwane said.
In response, defence lawyer Andries Kome argued that the rights of the mineworkers had been infringed, as any arrested person was supposed to be brought to court within 48 hours.
Kome said where one slept after work could be regarded as home, so the mineworkers had verifiable addresses.
Court proceedings were being interpreted in several languages, including Shangaan, Zulu, Tshwana and Shona (Zimbabwe's main language).
In the morning, a group of women protested at the court, demanding the release of their husbands, brothers, and fathers. Police instructed the protesters to leave the court building. They assembled in a street adjacent to the court, singing and dancing.
As police trucks transporting the mineworkers made their way into the court premises, escorted by police cars, the women started praying, some weeping hysterically. The men inside sang.
Police officers holding shields formed a barricade at the court entrance.
The first lot of the mineworkers, walking in single file, filled the left side of the courtroom benches, which had been reserved for them. Some of them held hands. There were bloodstains on some of their clothes.
Former ANC Youth League spokesman Floyd Shivambu was in court, waiting for the matter to begin. He had been singing and dancing with the women outside the court.
On Thursday police shot and killed 34 people while trying to disperse protesters at the mine. Over 78 people were wounded. Ten people, including two police officers and two security guards, were killed in the week before the clash. - Sapa