Home News Killers of S.Africa anti-apartheid hero Hani stabbed in prison

Killers of S.Africa anti-apartheid hero Hani stabbed in prison

Published on 26/02/2014

Two men convicted of assassinating anti-apartheid communist leader Chris Hani, survived a prison attack Wednesday when a fellow inmate stabbed them with a spoon, a South African government spokesman said.

“Offenders Clive Derby-Lewis and Janus Walusz were attacked by one offender with a ‘kitchen table spoon’,” said correctional services spokesman Manelisi Wolela, without elaborating.

“They both suffered some lacerations in their heads and hands at the Kgosi Mampuru Correctional Centre” in the capital Pretoria, he said in a statement.

Contacted by AFP, Wolela refused to give further details on the attack until a police investigation has been completed.

Right-wing former lawmaker Derby-Lewis, 78, and Polish immigrant Walusz, 61, are serving 25 years for shooting dead South African Communist Party leader Hani in front of his home in 1993.

The death of the charismatic and hugely popular leader came at a crucial point in political negotiations to end white minority apartheid rule, and many feared it would push the country over the edge.

The assassination pushed racial tensions to near-breaking point, prompting riots and deaths that pushed late liberation leader Nelson Mandela to call for peace in a nationally televised address.

Mandela became South Africa’s first black president following the first all-race elections a year later.

Derby-Lewis and Walusz have remained controversial figures, and past talk of parole has drawn fierce opposition from both the public and Hani’s family.