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Tue Aug 30 07:11:57 SAST 2016

Outrage on social media over Hani killer's parole

TMG Digital | 10 March, 2016 12:59
April 1993: Protestors march through the streets after Chris Hani's assassination on 14 April 1993. Secretary-General of the South African Communist Party Martin Chris Hani was assassinated on 14 April 1993. Approximately 1.5 million people participated in the protests and marches that followed his assassination. In October 1993, Clive Derby-Lewis of the Conservative Party and a Polish immigrant, Janusz Walus, were found guilty for Hani's murder, and were sentenced to death.
Image by: Gallo Images/Media24 Newspaper Archives

Disbelief over his release and disbelief that he actually committed the murder he was jailed for dominated online discourse following the news on Thursday morning of the imminent release of Janusz Walus.

Walus‚ who on April 10‚ 1993 shot dead South African Communist Party leader Chris Hani outside his Dawn Park home‚ must be released from prison within 14 days‚ a Pretoria court ordered.

#GenesisAllBlack ‏@RiyahnH seemed exasperated at the news and tweeted: “Guys‚ Janusz-Walus got parole!? Can't be!!”

Brr. ‏@kAbeLo_Phuti tweeted: “The release of Janusz Walus is wrong. Its wrong. Its just wrong. Either we are being betrayed or apartheid was a game” #FreeAPLAmembers”.

This was a reference to jailed Pan Africanist Congress member Kenny Motsomai‚ who recently refused to be released parole‚ saying the conditions attached to the supervision were too harsh.

Motsomai‚ who was arrested and jailed for murdering a white traffic officer in Rustenburg‚ was also mentioned by Ntate Mphe Ngwana* ‏@vspazierganger: “Janusz Walus arrested in '93 gets parole‚ but Kenny Motsamai arrested in '88 is denied parole - #FreeKennyMotsamai”.

AllPhiwe™ ‏@AllPhiwe brought up an apartheid-era killer who was granted parole in January last year: “First Eugene de Kock gets his freedom‚ now this Janusz Walus! What are we dealing with here? Who's been promised what?”

De Kock headed up the notorious Vlakplaas farm where many anti-apartheid figures were tortured or killed.

Abena ‏@abby_larby expressed doubt that the full truth about the killing was known: “A little disappointed that Janusz Walus is being released on parole‚ still wonder if everything was said about Chris Hani's assassination...”

Khoisan Bantu ‏@GeenBlanke said Walus himself could provide those answers: “Hitman‚ Janusz Walus must reveal to us‚ who was behind the plot to kill Chris Hani. Was it the apartheid gov or a faction in ANC or both.”

Walus’ co-conspirator Clive Derby-Lewis was released last year. He is said to have procured the weapon for Walus‚ a Polish immigrant‚ who pulled the trigger.

Theodore ‏@SirRhulz_5 demanded that “Janusz Walus must voetsek back to Poland.”

Both Derby-Lewis and Walus were sentenced to death‚ but their sentences were later commuted to life imprisonment.

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