SACP turns to the law to ensure Chris Hani’s killer is not released on parole

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The South African Communist Party (SACP) says it is turning to the law to ensure that Chris Hani’s killer, Janusz Walus, is not released on parole.

This comes after the Constitutional Court on 21 November ordered that Walus be released on parole within 10 days. He was serving a life sentence for killing Hani in 1993.

The SACP and its alliance partners picketed outside the Constitutional Court in Johannesburg.

A picket outside the highest court in the land revealed the SACP’s lack of closure to the assassination of former SACP Secretary-General, Chris Hani in 1993. The Communist Party’s Secretary-General, Solly Mapaila, announced their programme of action to prevent the release of Walus.

“We want to stay the execution of this decision by the Constitutional Court, so we are going for a rescission of this decision by the Constitutional Court as a legal process available to us.”

Hani was assassinated outside his home in Boksburg on the East Rand in 1993 a year before the country’s first democratic elections. Hani’s death raised fears of civil war and decades later, the alliance says it is still in the dark about this event. Dan Hato of the uMkhonto Wesizwe Liberation War Veterans elaborates.

“We are not against the judiciary, but we want the truth, and the truth is simple, Janusz Walus has not told us what really happened, who was his collaborators.”

SACP, ANC picket against the Janusz Walus parole ruling:

The Constitutional Court’s judgment on Walus has drawn mixed reactions as well as criticism against the judiciary, prompting legal bodies to urge citizens to respect the rule of law. Walus had been applying for parole since 2011, and was denied every time. He then approached the Constitutional Court to review Justice Minister Ronald Lamola’s 2020 decision not to approve his release on parole. ANC Gauteng Chairperson, Panyaza Lesufi, says the picket was not an attack on the judiciary.

“Are we here to burn down this Constitutional Court? No. Are we here to attack personally any judge here? No, we are just here to demonstrate our dissatisfaction and it is there in the bill of rights, it is there in our constitution.”

The Ministry of Justice is yet to issue details on the process of placing Walus on parole. Despite the Constitutional Court’s unanimous ruling, which has exposed the wounds of the apartheid past, the SACP reiterates that Walus has not come clean, and he should not enjoy life outside prison.