By Fungai Maboreke
(GIN) - Ex-Robben Island political prisoner and anti apartheid activist Neville Alexander spent a decade jailed with former president Nelson Mandela. From 1964-1974, he taught fellow inmates history, while Mandela instructed them in law.
His passing was noted by current President Jacob Zuma.
“The country has lost a person of high intellectual and academic standing,” said Zuma. “We extend our deepest condolences to Dr Alexander’s family, relatives and friends.”
In 1962, Alexander was one of nine members of the Yu Chi Chan Club – the Chinese name for guerrilla warfare which was to become the National Liberation Front, which he co-founded.
He was arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit sabotage against the racist white minority regime in 1964.
Upon his release from prison, Alexander joined Steve Biko’s Black Consciousness Movement. SA History Online quoted Alexander to say, “the ‘University of Robben Island’ was one of the best universities in the country. It also showed me that you don’t need professors.”