Book captures struggle against apartheid education

Shaykh Sayed Ridhwaan, exco member of Cape Town Ulama Board, Dr Ismail Vadi author of Teachers in the Struggle against Apartheid Education and Moulana Sayed Imraan Ziyaee, principal of CTIEC.

Dr Ismail Vadi, the former Gauteng MEC for roads and transport, former University of the Witwatersrand education department lecturer, and teacher unionist, has released his new book titled Teachers in the Struggle against Apartheid Education.

The book, which was launched at the Al-Ikhlaas Academia Library in Lansdowne Road over the weekend, sheds light on the courageous efforts of teachers during the apartheid era.

The Cape Town Ulama Board congratulated Dr Vadi for his “meticulous” research and “dedication” to preserving this significant part of South Africa’s history.

They commended the book for serving as a powerful reminder of the resilience and strength of the teachers who played a crucial role in shaping the education landscape during those challenging times, according to Sayed Ridhwaan Mohamed, exco member of Cape Town Ulama Board.

“The book pays tribute to the late veteran educationist, Billy Morgan, who dedicated 39 years of his life to teaching before passing away a few weeks ago. Dr Vadi describes Mr Morgan as an ‘inspirational teacher leader’ and dedicates many pages of his book to him.”

Reflecting on Mr Morgan’s contributions, Dr Vadi expressed gratitude, saying, “Mr Morgan must be honoured for his selfless contribution to education in this community. This book is a tribute to a man who devoted his entire life to education.”

The book explores the development of education during apartheid and features biographical sketches of 45 leading teachers, primarily from Lenasia and Johannesburg, who fought against the oppressive education system. These educators faced victimisation, detention, transfer, and even termination for taking a stand against apartheid within schools.

Pictured are some of the educators and public figures who attended the book launch.

The book acknowledges the sacrifices made by these teachers, highlighting the case of Ahmed Timol, a teacher who was tragically killed while in detention.

Prominent educators and public figures who attended the launch included Igsaan Higgins from the Castle of Good Hope, retired Judge Siraj Desai, Moulana Sayed Imraan Ziyaee, principal of Cape Town Islamic Educational Centre (CTIEC), and Professor Usuf Chikte.

Several speakers including former provincial education minister Yusuf Gabru, Dr Shuaib Manjra, Mandy Sanger Mandy, Fazela Mohamed, and Hatton Mohamed, addressed the audience, emphasising the importance of connecting past experiences to the current state of education and urging the community to defend democracy.

Contact the library on 021 697 1508 or visit to buy the book and for more information.