A sore indictment

11 September 2020 | Opinion

President Hage Geingob yesterday joined the chorus of those paying tribute to human rights lawyer and South African anti-apartheid stalwart George Bizos, who died on Wednesday at the age of 92.

Not many may know this, but Bizos fled the Nazi occupation of his native Greece at age 13, and obviously went on to become one of the region and continent's most prominent human rights lawyers, championing the cause of black people who were denied even their most basic rights.

This was before the days of keyboard warriors, and standing up for the rights of others could easily have cost him his life, or worse.

In his later years, particularly after the death of his Rivonia trial client and close friend, Nelson Mandela, Bizos expressed his utmost disappointment and disillusionment with South Africa's plunge toward corruption and the blatant misrule of the African National Congress.

“We have failed to live up to the vision of Mandela,” Bizos said at Madiba's memorial in December 2013.

While many will remember his immense contribution to the anti-apartheid struggle, and towards fighting for human rights for those who were treated like dogs by the heinous regime, it is a sore indictment on the so-called liberators that Bizos lived to see the untangling of the hopes and dreams of his people.

This second trauma also haunts those who bled for Namibia's freedom.

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