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Front National wants Derby-Lewis released

The call from the new party comes just days after the 21st anniversary of Chris Hani's assassination.

Clive Derby-Lewis during an amnesty hearing at Pretoria City Hall. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - Just a few days after the 21st anniversary of Chris Hani's assassination, newly formed political party Front National is demanding one of the men arrested for his murder be released from prison.

Clive Derby-Lewis was convicted for the 1993 assassination of the former South African Communist Party leader (SACP).

Derby-Lewis is said to be terminally ill and the party is demanding he be released from prison immediately.

Last week, party members marched to the Department of Correctional Services in Pretoria.

The party's Dan Roodt says Derby-Lewis didn't kill anyone "personally".

"You must remember that Clive Derby Lewis was implicated in the assassination of Chris Hani but he himself didn't kill anyone."

The party says Derby-Lewis is terminally ill and should be released so he can die in his own home and not in a jail cell.

But the SACP's Alex Mashilo says his current health status isn't an excuse.

"If a person is terminally ill that person can continue concealing the truth."

Hani was gunned down in Boksburg on Gauteng's East Rand on 10 April 1993.

Janusz Waluś shot Hani with a pistol provided by Derby-Lewis.

Waluś and Derby-Lewis are both serving life jail terms.

Derby-Lewis has been in prison for 21 years and has been denied parole several times.

He has also been attacked twice in the Kgosi Mampuru Prison in Pretoria this year.

The Department of Correctional Services condemned the second attack and would do everything in its power to ensure that it did not happen again.

Last month, he was stabbed in the back with a piece of glass.

In February, both Derby-Lewis and Waluś were attacked in an alleged gang-related attack.

A lone assailant attacked them with a spoon which is believed to have been sharpened.

Meanwhile, last week Hani's daughter Lindiwe said she felt "extremely sorry" for her father's two killers, describing them as "pathetic".

She said she was still waiting for an apology from them.