South africa's system of apartheid is one of the most controversial present- day issues, but its roots lie in a history of oppression. The conscience of governments all over the world is being tested as the double standards of many have been revealed through the conflict of financial interest versus human rights. Steve Biko came to the fore in the '60s and '70s when the black consciousness movement emerged to radically change the self-awareness of black people in South Africa. Biko, as the leader of the movement, achieved international status and recognition. His premature death in 1977 and the subsequent inquest shocked the world, bringing home to people the brutality of the apartheid system. Roger Omond assesses the importance of Biko and the black consciousness movement in South Africa in the struggle against apartheid today.