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From an early age Steve Biko showed an interest in anti-Apartheid politics. After being expelled from his first school, Lovedale, in the Eastern Cape for 'anti-establishment' behaviour, he was transferred to a Roman Catholic boarding school in Natal. From there he enrolled as a learner at the University of Natal Medical School (Black Section). Whilst at medical school Biko became involved with the National Union of South African Students (NUSAS). But the union was dominated by white liberals and failed to represent the needs of black learners, so Biko resigned in 1969 and founded the South African Students' Organisation (SASO). SASO was involved in providing legal aid and medical clinics, as well as helping to develop cottage industries for disadvantaged black communities.

In 1972 Biko was one of the founders of the Black Peoples Convention (BPC) working on social upliftment projects around Durban. The BPC effectively brought together roughly 70 different black consciousness groups and associations, such as the South African Student's Movement (SASM), which played a significant role in the 1976 uprisings, the National Association of Youth Organisations (NAYO), and the Black Workers Project (BWP) which supported black workers whose unions were not recognised under the Apartheid regime. Biko was elected as the first president of the BPC and was promptly expelled from medical school. He started working full time for the Black Community Programme (BCP) in Durban which he also helped found.






Important People in South African History

Steve Biko

Steve Biko