Strong reaction to ruling granting parole to convicted murderer of SACP leader

A court ruling granting parole to convicted murderer of South African Communist Party (SACP) leader Chris Hani has sparked strong reaction from politicians and the public alike.

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On Thursday, Pretoria High Court Judge Nicoline Janse van Nieuwenhuizen ordered that Hani’s killer Janusz Walus be released on parole within 14 days.

The Law Court
The Law Court
The parole board in 2013 recommended that Walus be released on parole but Justice and Correctional Services Minister, Michael Masutha turned the recommendation down.

Walus, a Polish immigrant, shot and killed Hani near Johannesburg on April 10, 1993. He was initially sentenced to death but this was converted to life in prison after the abolition of capital punishment.

Hani’s death robbed South Africa of a committed revolutionary who embodied the undying resolve to freedom and liberation by the South African people, the ruling African National Congress (ANC) said.

The wife of the slain anti-apartheid hero, Limpho Hani said the parole decision marks a sad day for South Africa.

Limpho accused the judge of being a racist, saying, “She (the judge) told me and my family to move on, so this judgment is not a surprise”.

“The judge is nothing but a racist. To her, black lives don’t matter,” Limpho told Xinhua.

SACP second deputy general secretary, Solly Mapaila said, “The judge created an impression that she had prejudged the matter even before we put our case forward by calling on the family to move on, which was quite insensitive.”

It was unacceptable that the men who murdered Hani are now both being freed on parole, while one of the co-convicted is still behind bars for the murder they committed, Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) official Apa Pooe said.

One of the co-convicted, Kenny Motsomai was still languishing in prison. The third one, Clive Derby Lewis was released on medical parole 10 months ago.

The ANC has demanded the immediate deportation of Walus to the country of origin once he is released.

“It is important that Walus be deported to his home country of Poland,” said ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa.

“Walus never wanted to see a free and democratic South Africa, He did not even show remorse or disclose why his actions were premeditated on that day.” Kodwa said.

The Ministry of Justice and Correctional Services said it was still studying the judgment and would decide whether to appeal it.

“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,”ministry spokesman Mthunzi Mhaga said. Enditem

Source; Xinhua

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