SA Revokes Janusz Walus’ Citizenship: The South African Communist Party (SACP), after hearing the case against Janusz Walus said they are positive about the arguments presented in court.
SACP’s Alex Mashilo told reporters that they are glad that the Supreme Court of Appeal is taking into account that there are several facets to the case, including restorative justice.
On April 10, 1993 – Janusz Waluś and his co-assassinator Clive Derby-Lewis murdered one of South Africa’s finest brain, Chris Hani during one of those terminal events intended to push South Africa over the edge.
Hani was assassinated on Easter Saturday, at a very crucial time when negotiations to bring apartheid to an end were taking place.
He was the leader of the South African Communist Party (SACP) and chief of staff of Umkhonto we Sizwe – the armed wing of the African National Congress (ANC) at the time.
Around 10:20 am on April 10, Waluś had driven to Hani’s house in Boksburg, Johannesburg with a gun he received from Clive Derby-Lewis.
As Hani got out of his car (he had just returned home), Waluś called out his name. As Hani turned immediately, he was shot once in the body and three times in the head. Waluś fled while Hani died on the scene.
After a thorough investigation, he was captured along with Clive Derby-Lewis. A hit-list which suggested that Hani was the third on Waluś and Derby-Lewis’s list – including the names and addresses of Nelson Mandela and Joe Slovo, among others – was also found by the police in the course of investigations.
Derby-Lewis’ offence was that he helped and abetted Janusz Waluś in the assassination of the SACP leader. He was convicted of conspiracy to murder and sentenced to death for his role in the crime.
However, after the capital punishment was outlawed in 1995, the sentence was scaled down to life imprisonment.
Derby-Lewis defended his roles, saying he acted “in defence of my people, who were threatened with a Communist take-over.”
In June 2010, he applied for parole on the grounds that he was over 70, and was entitled to parole in terms of South African law for having served in excess of 15 years in prison.
Five months later, he was reported to have been undergoing medical treatment for a gangrenous spot in his leg (gangrenous is the death and decay of body tissue, often on a limb, as a result of insufficient blood supply due to injury, infection, or disease), prostate cancer, skin cancer and hypertension.
Derby-Lewis was denied medical parole in 2011, 2013 and 2015. He was later released in June 2015 after serving for 22 years.
Born in Cape Town on January 22, 1936, he died on November 3, 2016, in Pretoria, from his terminal lung cancer.
Janusz Waluś is a Polish immigrant born on 14 January 1953. He joined his father and brother in South Africa in 1981.
He later joined the National Party and the Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging after his father’s business went bankrupt.
He was sentenced to death for assassinating Chris Hani but the sentence was commuted to life imprisonment following the abolition of the death penalty in South Africa.
At the end of apartheid, Waluś applied for amnesty with the introduction of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission – which would give him parole.
The High Court sitting in Pretoria ruled on 10 March 2016 that Waluś should be released on parole but the Home Affairs announced in September 2016 that if Waluś is released on Parole, his SA citizenship would be revoked and he would be deported.
In May 2017, the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein received an application from Justice Minister Michael Masutha, requesting it to overturn Waluś’ parole.
On May 29, Judges Christiaan van der Merwe, Jeremiah Shongwe, Mandisa Maya, Boissie Mbha and Ashton Schippers sat to decide if Waluś should be freed on parole.
SA Revokes Janusz Walus’ Citizenship: Facts To Know
- Revocation of Waluś’ South African citizenship was brought to light by his Advocate Roelof du Plessis.
- Roelof du Plessis told the court on May 29, during a meeting that the Home Affairs had revoked Waluś’ citizenship “just a few weeks ago”.
- The Department has also served him with a warrant of deportation.
- Waluś has spent 23 years behind bars.
- He can only be deported once he has been freed on parole.
- The Supreme Court reserved judgment in the case, citing a procedural irregularity involving the Hani family’s victim impact statements.
- Until 2017, Janusz Waluś held dual Polish-South African citizenship.
Chris Hani’s wife, Limpho, who was also in the court declined to speak to journalists.