Monday, February 16, 2009

An obituary I missed - Helen Suzman

If most are asked who was South Africa's greatest politican, you'll hear Nelson Mandela. After all he spent much of his life in prison and then enabled the peaceful transition of power from the racial autocracy to the one party dominated democracy. However, if not the the greatest, Helen Suzman deserves the most honourable mention. She was head and shoulders above the intellectually and morally handicapped Thabo Mbeki, and the thieving corrupt scum that make up too many ANC MPs. She was for too long, the sole voice of reason in South Africa's whites only Parliament.

New Years Day saw Helen Suzman pass away. The Economist's obituary tells so much about this remarkable woman.

It talks of her legendary bravery:

"Verwoerd, an earlier prime minister, a man she admitted she was “scared stiff” of, fared no better. “I have written you off,” he told her. “The whole world has written you off,” she retorted.

But also her principled opposition to race based laws regardless of source:

"when the African National Congress, once in power, began to impose quotas for blacks in jobs, she naturally and ferociously opposed it. In many ways black rule proved “a huge disappointment” to her: corrupt, spendthrift, anti-white, and doing little to help the millions of poor blacks whose lot she had tried to improve. Thabo Mbeki’s wilful ignorance over AIDS appalled her.

The world has lost a true principled fighter for freedom, a liberal woman in a country once dominated by bigoted conservative men, now dominated by misogynistic socialist corrupt ones.

It is telling that New Zealand's most well known activist against apartheid, John Minto, is so divorced from South Africa that he couldn't himself pen a column about the passing of this hero. South Africa owes far more to Suzman, than this petty socialist activist from NZ.

1 comment:

James said...

Mandela was a shit...he turned a blind eye to Winnies murdering/sexual deviancy.

Suzmann was a real hero against apartheid.....no matter what the colour of the practioners..