Chris Hani’s killer stabbed in prison, still slated for release later this week
GIN)––South Africa’s Dept. of Correctional Services has confirmed “an unfortunate stabbing incident” of the killer of anti-Apartheid hero Chris Hani. The right-wing Polish-born Janusz Waluś survived the incident and is still slated for release later this week.
The announcement of Waluś release on parole stunned supporters of South Africa’s ANC ruling party and the South African Communist Party. Hani, the leader of the South African Communist Party, was a senior member of the military wing of the African National Congress, the former liberation movement which is now in power. He was the most popular politician after South Africa’s first Black president, Nelson Mandela, and his murder caused much shock and anger.
Hani’s wife, Limpho, called the decision to free Hani’s killer, Janusz Waluś “truly diabolical.” She and the government had vigorously opposed attempts by Waluś, 69, to gain his freedom after almost three decades in prison.
In his ruling on behalf of the Constitutional Court, Chief Justice Ray Zondo acknowledged that Waluś had committed a “very serious crime.” “He nearly plunged South Africa into a civil war after carrying out a cold-blooded murder,” the justice said, but nonetheless, the refusal to grant Waluś parole was “irrational.”
“The principle of equality before the law was not just written for those who fought Apartheid––but [also for] those who actively supported it,” Zondo maintained. Waluś should now be released within 10 days.
Clive Derby-Lewis was Waluś’s co-conspirator in the murder, giving the gun to Waluś that was used to kill Hani. He was released on parole in June 2015 and died a year later at age 80. Waluś, a Polish immigrant, had links to the Afrikaner far right. While in prison, Waluś became a symbol for young Polish nationalists and fascists. His South African citizenship was revoked in 2017. Some have called for his deportation.
Solly Mapaila, general secretary of the South African Communist Party (SACP), was quoted to say: “For the right-wingers who wanted to plunge our country into chaos, they killed comrade Chris Hani.” His murder “left a gaping wound in his family, the SACP and the ranks of the working class… The judgment has rubbed salt in the wound.”RelatedThe ANC’s battle for South Africa’s presidency heats upDecember 11, 2017In "International"South African promise of a ‘new dawn; slowed by infightingJune 7, 2018In "International"Will ANC leaders keep Mandela’s promise or drift?June 27, 2013In "Imported"