Tribute to Helen Suzman

I would like to pay tribute to Helen Suzman, human rights campaigner, who passed away recently. Helen used her membership of the South African Parliament to rigorously campaign against apartheid. Unafraid to be a lone voice in the wilderness Helen fearlessly challenged the National Party government week after week, year after year for much of the second half of the 20th century. She was a true parliamentarian, using the Westminster-style system to expose the Government for its misuse of power.

When I visited South Africa on a delegation last year, I made a well received speech about Human Rights and met a number of displaced Zimbabweans. I was saddened to see that despite the efforts of the current Government, much of the poverty and injustice that campaigners like Helen and Nelson Mandela, had fought against still exist. However, the change that has been achieved is remarkable.

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