SACP welcomes SCA's parole ruling on 'unrepentant' Hani killer

2016-07-13 11:57
MK veterans outside the Western Cape High Court protesting the parole of Janusz Walus. (Tammy Petersen, News24)

MK veterans outside the Western Cape High Court protesting the parole of Janusz Walus. (Tammy Petersen, News24)

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Pretoria - The South African Communist Party (SACP) has welcomed the Supreme Court of Appeals’s order granting Justice Minister Michael Masutha leave to appeal against the parole ruling for convicted murderer Janusz Walus.

In March, North Gauteng High Court Judge Nicolene Janse van Nieuwenhuizen ordered that Walus be released from prison on parole within fourteen days.

Walus, a Polish immigrant, was convicted of murdering then-SACP leader Chris Hani in 1993.

Janse van Nieuwenhuizen initially denied leave to appeal in the High Court. The Ministry of Justice then filed an application on April 19 for leave to appeal with the SCA.

The SACP has now said it’s happy following the SCA’s order, which was granted on July 4, and became public on Tuesday.

"The parole order was disappointing, in particular its serious legal difficulties and loopholes," party spokesperson Alex Mashilo said on Tuesday.

"On this basis, the SACP, Justice Ministry and the Hani family held that there were reasonable prospects for successfully appealing against the judgment.

"As the SACP, we are happy that the SCA, contrary to Judge Nicolene Janse van Nieuwenhuizen, granted the leave to appeal."

Mashilo said the party believed that Walus remained "unrepentant, unremorseful and un-rehabilitated", and hoped he would remain in prison until the appeal process was concluded.

"The SACP will continue pushing for justice to serve its full course!" the statement ended.

Appeal only likely to be heard in 2017

Registrar for the SCA Paul Myburgh told News24 on Wednesday that the order was granted on July 4 already, but became public after media houses got wind of it on Tuesday.

Myburgh said there were still lengthy processes involved in the application though, and the appeal would only be heard sometime in 2017.

"The ministry has one month to respond to the order from July 4. Then they’ve got three months to file the transcribed record, a further six weeks to file heads of argument," he said.

"Walus then has one month to file his heads of argument, so we are probably only looking at next year [for the appeal to be heard]."

Justice ministry spokesperson Advocate Mthunzi Mhaga could not be reached after multiple attempts on Wednesday.

Read more on:    sacp  |  sca  |  chris hani  |  pretoria  |  judiciary

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