In memoriam / FRFI 229 Oct/Nov 2012

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Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! 229 October/November 2012

Solomon

Solomon came to Britain from Nigeria in 1968 to study at Wor­cester College for the Blind. Thereafter he studied for an MA in African studies at SOAS in London. He would have gone on to a PhD had there been sufficient support with reading. Instead Solomon went on to teacher training and taught English in Brent. He spoke many languages, wrote prose and poetry and played chess. Solomon taught English as a foreign language as well as braille, mainly to people who had lost their sight later in life. Much of his teaching was informal and Solomon was very generous with his knowledge and time. In 1994 Solomon helped found the Anglo-Nigerian Welfare Association for the Blind; he worked for the Organisation for Blind African-Caribbeans.

As an active member of City of London Anti-Apartheid Group in the 1980s, Solomon was on the picket outside the South African Embassy at all times of day and night, participating in all activities, including a memorable invasion of the pitch at Lord’s Cricket Ground to protest against the apartheid South African team. While other protesters were arrested for the duration of the match, Solomon was just dumped by the police with no white cane outside the grounds. When money was awarded for cases of wrongful arrest, despite living a frugal life and on a very tight budget, Solomon handed it all over to the campaign.

Comrades and friends of Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! and City of London Anti-Apartheid Group remember Solomon very fondly and extend our condolences to his family and friends.

Jamal

Jamal just became part of us – the weekly Victory to the Intifada picketers outside the flagship store of Marks and Spencer. Like thousands of people over the past 13 years who have occupied the pavement for the Palestinian cause, for an end to British collusion with the Israeli Zionist state and in opposition to imperialist wars and interventions, Jamal made his protest.

We knew little about Jamal’s life, except that he was a Palestinian communist, wheel-chair bound since childhood and imprisoned by the Israeli state for many years for his fight for humanity and justice. Frail but determined he laughed that he was no linguist and his English was even weaker than his body. But he came to the picket through all the seasons of the years and became part of the picket family.

We will miss our comrade dearly. He was ever confident that the struggle for the Palestinian cause is a beacon for all the oppressed of the world and that it will be won.

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