Walus: Should Chris Hani's killer stay or should he go?

Lawyers for both sides slug it out over whether Hani's killer deserves parole

08 August 2018 - 07:00 By Graeme Hosken
Janusz Walus, Chris Hani's killer during his amnesty hearing at Benoni Town Hall.
Janusz Walus, Chris Hani's killer during his amnesty hearing at Benoni Town Hall.
Image: Gallo Images/Oryx Media Archive

It was a clash of justice versus alleged political sabotage in the parole application of Janusz Walus, one of the country’s most despised apartheid-era killers.

In the fight to gain his freedom for the third time, legal heavyweights – who were grilled by Judge Selby Baqwa – slugged it out in courtroom 4B of the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Tuesday.

Central to the arguments were allegations of documents around Walus’s rehabilitation being manipulated or withheld, and Correctional Services Minister Michael Masutha and the parole board chairperson ignoring parole panel recommendations for his release.

Walus has appealed to the court to be paroled and deported back to his home country of Poland, which Masutha and the Home Affairs Department argued was highly irregular.

Walus’s lawyer, Roelof du Plessis, slammed Masutha’s actions in denying his client parole as “unfair and unjust”, and argued Masutha unfairly prejudiced Walus by ignoring multiple recommendations that he be released on parole.

State advocate Marumo Moerane said Walus was sentenced to life imprisonment, “and pending parole, he is obliged to serve life in jail”. He dismissed Du Plessis’s assertions that documents were either manipulated or ignored.

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