This week in 1999 – Alumnus Mbeki becomes South Africa President
This week in 1999, former Sussex student Thabo Mbeki was sworn in as the new President of South Africa.
Mr Mbeki was at the forefront of the anti-apartheid activity during his time at the University – he himself credited the campus movement with playing a role in preventing the execution of Nelson Mandela.
Here is an extract from the original article in the Bulletin published 11 June 1999:
Former Student Becomes South African President
Thabo Mbeki, a Sussex alumnus, will be sworn in as the new President of South Africa on June 16 following the success of the ANC in the recent election.
Mr Mbeki was the first black South African student at Sussex. Under his influence the University was swept by a wave of anti-apartheid activity which he himself credited with helping to prevent the execution of Nelson Mandela and other prominent ANC activists. He led a headline-grabbing march from Brighton to the House of Commons in protest at the imprisonment of his father, Govan, and other members of the ANC, which put the issue on the national agenda…
You can discuss this article on the 50th anniversary Facebook page or on Twitter (#SussexUni50).