As Nelson Mandela’s life draws to a close, some focus has been placed on his lawyer, George Bizos, a human rights activist, defense lawyer and someone now having to defend himself against claims that he is involved in a fight to remove him from his involvement with Mandela’s private companies
Bizos defended Mandela in a 1960s treason trial and also successfully opposed his death sentence. The cases and his human rights work propelled him into the forefront of South African law and society, along with his association with Mandela.
Mandela’s two daughters, Makaziwe Mandela and Zenani Mandela-Dlamini, filed papers in APril asking a court to remove Bizos, Tokyo Sexwale, a cabinet minister and Mandela’s ex-lawyer Bally Chuene from the boards. They claim, among other things, that they were never appointed as shareholders and directors of the Mandela companies.
As Mandela lies dying, the fight over his personal assets has already started and his former defense lawyer and friend is placed in the position of having to now defend himself from allegations he denies.