George Bizos recalls how he landed on the security police radar as a student

Advocate George Bizos, who is the vice chair of the Joburg Cricket Club (JCC) spoke fondly about his early memories of the club and how it's embraced non-racialism. Bizos was attending the club's annual charity event on Friday.

Bizos and his father were part of a group of refugees who fled German occupied Greece to South Africa and this picture appeared in the Sunday Times. A teacher, Cecilia Feinstein, recognised him from this picture when he was working at a shop and asked him why he wasn't at school. He had passed Standard 6 in Greece but had not been to school in three years since arriving in SA.

He spoke about how Feinstein impacted his life and his schooling career began.

That really changed my life.

George Bizos, human rights advocate

In 1948 the nationalist party had won the election and Bizos was a first-year student at Wits. He said his father was ambitious about him becoming a doctor but his results were not good enough.

A member of Parliament called in Prime Minister Malan and asked what was going on at Wits where blacks were sitting next to whites and this was contrary to the Apartheid policy and action would be taken against this small group of leftists who would be put in their place.

George Bizos, human rights advocate

I made a speech as a first-year student and said if equal treatment of our fellow black students makes me a leftist, then I'm proud to be one. This made the newspaper the next day and that was the beginning of my file with the security police.

George Bizos, human rights advocate

Listen here to Bizos chat about his early years.

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