Thursday, March 10, 2016

'Never Return' - ANC Slams Court Ruling on Walus, Demands Deportation
Thursday 10 March 2016 - 4:53pm

JOHANNESBURG - The African National Congress on Thursday called for Janusz Walus, the man who assassinated Chris Hani 23 years ago, to be deported to his native Poland after the North Gauteng High Court ordered that he be freed on parole in a fortnight.

“The court’s decision to release him exactly a month before we commemorate the 23rd Anniversary of the assassination of this towering hero of our struggle is extremely insensitive. It is further devoid of any appreciation of the devastating impact the murder of Comrade Chris had, not only on the African National Congress, the South African Communist Party, but South Africa as a whole,” the ANC said.

The party said it should not be forgotten that the murder of Hani, the leader of the SACP at the time of his death, had brought South Africa to the brink of civil war.

“It should never be forgotten that the premeditated actions of Walus almost precipitated a civil war in South Africa, which was stopped only by the strength of the leadership of the ANC. Walus’ imminent release is a travesty of justice and a tragedy for the Hani family and all South Africans who believe in human rights and who held a firm belief in our right to fight for freedom.

“The African National Congress demands that Janusz Walus is immediately deported to his country of origin on his release; never to return to South Africa.”

The ANC call was backed by the South African National Civic Organisation.

The justice ministry on Thursday, in confirming the outcome of Walus’s court application, indicated that it may yet decide to appeal Judge Nicolene Janse van Nieuwenhuizen’s order that he be released on parole in 14 days and be given bail conditions.

Spokesman Mthunzi Mhaga said the department of justice and correctional services was still studying the judgment and would weigh its options.

“I cannot confirm that he will be freed on parole. What I can confirm is that the judge said he must be placed on parole in 14 days and given bail conditions,” Mhaga told ANA.

“We still have to reflect on the judgment and decide whether we will appeal or not,” he added.

Walus, 63, who left then communist Poland in 1981 to join his father and brother in South Africa, shot and killed Hani on Easter Sunday April 10, 1993 – a year before the country’s first democratic elections brought Nelson Mandela and the ANC to power.

He was initially sentenced to death, but this was converted to life in prison after the abolition of capital punishment.

Walus went to court to appeal the justice minister’s decision to refuse him parole last year.

His co-conspirator Clive Derby-Lewis was released on medical parole in June 2015.

- Africa News Agency

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