JOHANNESBURG - British House of Commons Speaker John Bercow met late Business Report journalist Wiseman Khuzwayo’s widow, Anna, and their children at the launch of the Wiseman Khuzwayo PhD Scholarship in Refugees and Human Trafficking at Hull University late Tuesday.

As the world celebrated International Refugees Day yesterday, the university dedicated the scholarship to Khuzwayo.

It said the scholarship was part of a wider £3 million (R54.5m) of investment in scholarships that attracted students from the US, Africa and Latin America.

Khuzwayo graduated with a law degree from Hull University in 1981 while in exile. “I could not have done a more satisfying job,” Khuzwayo said. “I am also able to practice a bit of my profession by writing for various newspapers and magazines, just so as not to be stale.”

The university said that slavery remained prevalent in the world with forced labour existing in the domestic, agricultural, sex, construction and retail industries among others. The international Labour Organisation estimates that there are at least 40 million victims of slavery across the world.

Khuzwayo successfully forced the UK to make him the first black exile to fly out of Lesotho by pointing out the differences between the treatment of his application for asylum against that of fellow white South African journalist Donald Woods.


His fellow students at the time had raised £65000 to set up funding for the scholarship that will examine links between migration, trafficking and contemporary slavery.

A former student at the university, Mike Craven, said the scholarship was aptly named as Khuzwayo had experienced the realities of being a political refugee himself.

“He was a larger than life character who quickly established a very high profile at Hull,” Craven said. “He retained a good sense of humour despite his physical suffering at the hands of the authorities in South Africa.”

Khuzwayo died in May last year after a battle with cancer.

- BUSINESS REPORT