Chris Hani’s murderer Clive Derby-Lewis dies

Clive Derby-Lewis (80) was granted medical parole in May last year.

FILE: Clive Derby-Lewis testifies during an amnesty hearing in August 1997 for his part in the April 1993 murder of Chris Hani. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - Clive Derby-Lewis, one of the men convicted of the murder of former South African Communist Party (SACP) leader Chris Hani, has died at the age of 80.

Polish immigrant Janusz Walus and Derby-Lewis were convicted of the murder after Walus shot Hani at his home in Boksburg.

Derby-Lewis was handed a life sentence for supplying the firearm used to kill Hani.

The High Court in Pretoria granted Derby-Lewis, who had terminal lung cancer, medical parole on 29 May last year after five previous attempts failed.

Derby-Lewis's lawyer Roeloff Du Plessis has confirmed the news of his death.

“I can confirm that Mr Derby-Lewis passed away approximately two hours ago. His health deteriorated while he was on medical parole because it was stage 4 cancer that he had had.”

Before being granted parole, he had already served 21 years in jail but had been spending time in a prison hospital after being diagnosed with cancer.

In 2012, Derby-Lewis applied for medical parole for the first time after being refused normal parole in 2011.

The right-winger had previously suffered from prostate and skin cancer as well as gangrene in his right leg.

In early May last year, he launched another bid to be granted medical parole.

At the time experts said he had only about two months to live as he suffered from aggressive cancer which was resistant to treatment.

His legal team argued Derby-Lewis deserved to die at home close to his family.

Meanwhile, after being granted medical parole, he requested to visit Hani's family so he could apologise.

Derby-Lewis's lawyer said Hani's widow, Limpho, had still not accepted the apology.