Convicted killer of South African anti-apartheid hero gets bail

Janusz Walus

The convicted killer of South African anti-apartheid leader, Chris Hani, will be freed on bail in two weeks after more than 20 years in prison, a Pretoria court ruled on Thursday.

Janusz Walus is serving a life sentence for the 1993 murder of Hani, a charismatic activist and politician who was both a senior member of the African National Congress (ANC) and the head of the South African Communist Party (SACP) when he was gunned down.

The decision to free him is likely to be contentious in a country still dealing with the legacy of the brutality meted out by the white-minority regime that prevailed from 1948 to 1994.

Mr. Hani’s murder threatened to derail South Africa’s transition to multi-racial democracy, leading to nationwide riots and triggering fears of a civil war.

Chris Hani
Chris Hani

Mr. Walus, a Polish immigrant, shot Mr. Hani dead outside his Johannesburg home.

“Yes, he got parole,” his lawyer, Roelof du Plessis, said after the court session.

Mr. Walus was sentenced alongside Clive Derby-Lewis, a right-wing politician who provided the murder weapon.

Both men were originally sentenced to death, but that was commuted to life in prison after South Africa abolished death penalty in 1995.

Mr. Derby-Lewis was freed on medical liberation last year.

Mr. Hani’s wife, Limpho, however criticised the decision to free Mr. Walus.


Coronavirus factsheet


PT Mag Campaign AD

All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.

Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.


TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...

BE THE FIRST TO KNOW! Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required


Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application