12 September

'September '77 _ Port Elizabeth weather fine _ It was business as usual _ In police room 619' _ Peter Gabriel, Biko

September 12, 2009 · 1 min read

‘Biko’s death leaves me cold’, said South African Minister of Police, Jimmy Kruger, today 1977, on hearing of Steve Biko’s death while held in the custody by the South African police. The government claimed that Biko’s death was caused by a hunger-strike However, the official autopsy concluded that it was due to a brain lesion caused by the ‘application of force to the head’.

Now we who witnessed the greatness

Sing and dance to his legacy,

We who muse his intelligence

Spread the good news in Reggae, Soul, Marabi


And the theatre of liberation,

Knowing that nobody dies until they’re forgotten

We chant Biko today

Biko tomorrow

Biko forever.

Wickedness tried to kill greatness

Now wickedness is dead

And greatness lives

In Islington

As he lives in Cape Town.

Benjamin Zephaniah, Biko the Greatness


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