Do not forget

Steve Biko, killed in detention, 12 September, thirty years ago…

One Response to Do not forget

  1. Dear Rustum,

    Steve Biko’s story was first told to the outside world by Donald Woods in 1978 in his book called “Biko”, Paddington Press UK. I was on a holiday trip from South Africa to the UK and Europe and was in London when the news of Biko’s murder was announced.

    A few months later I left for Australia with my family following one by one until all were here by 1980.

    I was in Australia when the book was published and the world started to be shocked by the excesses of the apartheid regime.

    The photos come from the “Biko” book and a whole series of photos are between pages 158 and 159.

    I have only visited South Africa once since I left, and that was in 1997, nearly 20 years after leaving.

    I still have family there but am also in touch with events relating to HIV/AIDS because I worked in that field here for some years in Sydney before coming to live in Melbourne 7 years ago. I am now 81 so my chances of another visit to South Africa are diminishing year by year.

    My concerns about South Africa are mainly about the directions taken by Mbeki since he took over from Mandela and the ANC has lost its direction, becoming more and more authoritarian as time passes.

    The scandal about Mbeki and Manto and the sacking of the deputy health minster over the HIV/AIDS crisis is quite alarming and shows no sign of abating.

    Mbeki now wants to enforce increasing censorship by attempting to buy the Sunday Times which exposed the Manto scandal.

    Hope you don’t mind the rant and rave, but the corruption of the current regime is alarming and one wonders when it will end!

    I have some other books about Biko if I can be of further help, so don’t hesitate to ask.

    I will copy and paste this from my blog into your Biko “in Memoriam” commemorating 30 years since his murder in September 1977 to ensure that you get it.

    Congratulations on your poetry and the Ingrid Jonker award.

    Best wishes,

    Mannie De Saxe
    Posted by josken1 (

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