Why Prof Raymond Suttner had to wait 49 years before getting his Masters of Law

Writer, academic and political analyst, Professor Raymond Suttner, will finally be awarded his Masters of Law or L.LM degree after almost 50 years.

Suttner will graduate from the University of Cape Town (UCT) on 14 December.

He first submitted his thesis to the university in 1969, but could not be recognised at the time because he quoted a banned academic and anti-apartheid activist, Professor Jack Simons.

According to a Facebook post by Suttner, Simons was a ”listed” Communist at the time.

The thesis was on African customary law.

Since then he’s gone on to earn other degrees, including a PhD from Wits and an honorary Doctor of Letters from the Netaji Subhas Open University in Kolkata.

I had more or less forgotten about getting this degree.

Professor Raymond Suttner, writer, academic and political analyst

Professor Jack Simons was a listed Communist, meaning that he could not be quoted in anyway, expect for court cases and things like that.

Professor Raymond Suttner, writer, academic and political analyst

I was about 23 at the time in June 1969.

Professor Raymond Suttner, writer, academic and political analyst

The supervisor Donald Molteno said he can't allow the work with these illegal quotations. So I said I'll withdraw it.

Professor Raymond Suttner, writer, academic and political analyst

Listen to the conversation on The Pippa Hudson Show:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Why Prof Raymond Suttner had to wait 49 years before getting his Masters of Law


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