The death of veteran struggle lawyer George Bizos has left many heartbroken, including the scores of struggle families he represented over the decades and top legal practitioners he coached and inspired.
Bizos died at the age of 92 after a lifetime of service protecting human rights.
Graca Machel has described Bizos and Nelson Mandela as two souls with an uncompromising zest for justice.
She says Bizos and Madiba – in different trenches – complemented each other in a remarkable journey of six decades of brotherhood.
Machel says she knows Bizos is in the best company now with his wife and Madiba.
Ndileka Mandela, Mandela’s granddaughter said, “you were not just a friend of our grandfather…but a family member… we will miss you uncle George.
Lukhanyo Calata, son of Fort Calata, one of the Cradock Four, said, “he was a friend not just to the Calatas, but the Mkhonto, the Goniwes… he represented our mothers throughout the inquests… I spoke to my mother earlier and she’s devastated…”
When, in 2012, police mowed down 34 miners in one of the most brutal acts by post-apartheid security forces, Bizos was there.
Advocate Tembeja Ngcukaitobi spoke on how Bizos supported the families and represented them during the duration of the Farlam commission of inquiry, and how disappointed Bizos was as he had always hoped something like that would never happen in a free South Africa.
Bizos will be buried next week. His son Damon says it will be a small and private funeral.
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