'It's utter rubbish': Janusz Walus denies right-wing claims
Janusz Walus, convicted killer of SACP leader and former Umkhonto we Sizwe commander Chris Hani, has lodged a fierce fightback against allegations of his continued links to right-wingers in his bid to secure his release on parole.
Last week, allegations emerged that right-wingers in Poland, his birthplace, organised a fund-raising event in the form of a right-wing books sale and had collected about 1500 euros (R23 700), apparently to be used for his upkeep if he is released on parole in the next two months.
The claims were made by the Communist Party of Poland on December 16 in an email written to senior leaders of the SACP here in which it was alleged that the right-wingers in Poland were organising other extremists to attack SACP members in South Africa, particular senior leaders, who were resisting Walus's parole bid.
Walus's lawyer, Julian Knight, has denied the allegations.
“The claims against Walus are utter rubbish and an attempt by the SACP to create an enemy and justify their own existence. I don’t even know if there is a communist party in Poland. In any event, Walus has been in prison for 27 years and has no control over these so-called football supporters,” Knight said.
Walus and the late Clive Derby-Lewis were sentenced to life for killing Hani in the driveway of his Dawn Park home on the East Rand on April 10, 1993. Walus has been in jail since then while Derby-Lewis was released on parole in June 2015 following a lengthy court battle. He died on November 3, 2016, of lung cancer.
Prior to his death, Derby-Lewis told Forum Films that Hani was killed in 1993 to make South Africa ungovernable and to ensure that conservatives ran the country.
He also said Hani was a hardcore communist who could not be controlled by the ANC. As for Walus, his battle to be released on parole has been ongoing for years and recently, in January, former justice minister Michael Masutha turned down the latest of his numerous attempts to be released on parole.
In denying him parole, Masutha said: “Having considered the various reports of psychologists and the apparent contradictions arising therein, it was difficult for me to make a determination on the suitability for placement on parole at this stage.”
His legal representative, however, has made several submissions in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria for his parole, saying reports prepared by the psychologists Joel Mbele and Dr Zelda Buitendag have both concluded that Walus’s risk of offending again was low.
They also told numerous courts that Masutha’s decision was biased and subjective in his decision not to grant Walus parole.
On December 12, the high court in Pretoria again considered his application to be released on parole but it chose to remit the matter back to the incumbent Justice Minister Ronald Lamola, ordering him to make a decision within 60 days.