How Lindiwe Hani Overcame Addiction and Forgave Her Father's Killers
Lindiwe Hani was only 12 years old when her father, Chris Hani, was assassinated in his driveway in April 1993. Chris Hani was a prominent anti-apartheid activist and leader of the South African Communist Party, who left a shocked and grieving nation on the brink of civil war. But to Lindiwe, he was her daddy, who had been brutally ripped from her world.
In her memoir, Being Chris Hani's Daughter, co-written with Melinda Ferguson, Lindiwe reveals how she struggled to cope with the loss of her father and the burden of his legacy. She spiraled into a downward cycle of cocaine and alcohol addiction, which lasted for more than a decade. She also shares how she finally faced her demons and confronted her father's two killers, Clive Derby-Lewis and Janusz Walus, in a series of private meetings.
Lindiwe's book is a raw and honest account of her journey from trauma to healing, from self-destruction to self-discovery. It is also a tribute to her father's life and legacy, and a reflection on the state of South Africa today. Lindiwe hopes that her story will inspire others who are going through similar challenges and show them that there is hope and forgiveness.
Being Chris Hani's Daughter is available as a PDF ebook from various online platforms, such as Goodreads[^1^], Scribd[^2^] and ResearchGate[^3^]. You can also read an extract of the last interview with Chris Hani by historian Luli Callinicos in the book.
Lindiwe Hani was born in 1980, the second of Chris Hani's four children. She grew up in a loving and supportive family, but also witnessed the harsh realities of apartheid and the dangers of her father's political work. She recalls how her father was constantly on the run, how their house was raided by the police, and how she had to change schools and names to protect her identity.
When her father was killed, Lindiwe felt a deep sense of anger, confusion and abandonment. She felt that he had chosen his country over his family, and that he had left her alone to deal with the consequences. She also felt pressured to live up to his image and expectations, which she found overwhelming and impossible. She started to rebel against her mother and siblings, and sought comfort in drugs and alcohol.
For years, Lindiwe lived a double life: a successful marketing and communications professional by day, and a hopeless addict by night. She tried to hide her addiction from her family and friends, but eventually it caught up with her. She lost her job, her car, her home and her dignity. She hit rock bottom when she was arrested for drunk driving and spent a night in jail.
That was the turning point for Lindiwe. She realized that she needed help and that she could not continue living like this. She checked into a rehabilitation center and began the long and painful process of recovery. She also decided to confront her father's killers, who had been sentenced to life imprisonment for his murder. She wanted to understand why they did what they did, and how they felt about it. aa16f39245