Saturday, January 3, 2009

Helen Suzman

Politician and anti-apartheid activist, Helen Suzman, passed away on January 1st this year.

"Helen Suzman, the internationally prominent anti-apartheid campaigner who befriended the imprisoned Nelson Mandela and offered an often lonely voice for change among South Africa's white minority, has died, South Africa's SAPA news agency reported on Thursday. She was 91.

Suzman was for many years among the most venerated of white campaigners urging an end to the injustices of racial rule. But, while she challenged apartheid, her views on the creation of a new society fell well short of demands advanced by more radical black campaigners for such measures as economic sanctions to pressure the country's white rulers toward reform.

A diminutive, spry and elegant politician, Suzman became her country's longest-serving legislator, pressing for changes from the benches of the whites-only Parliament for 36 years before she retired from the assembly in 1989 and later created a pro-democracy foundation named after her."

The Age has an article covering the career of this remarkable women: "Courageous MP who single-handedly took on apartheid"

No comments: