Benjamin S. Rajuili was born in the Sotho-speaking Matatiele district of the Transkei in 1915, the son of a schoolmaster. He attended Lovedale and Fort Hare, earning a B.A. degree. After teaching, he became a minister of the African Methodist Episcopal Church in Dube township, Johannesburg. From 1959 to 1962 he was general secretary of the Interdenominational African Ministers Federation. He was elected to the continuation committee of the 1960 Consultative Conference of African Leaders, and, although inactive, he was later arrested with others on the committee (and released on appeal) on charges of furthering the aims of the African National Congress (ANC). The same year he joined the Progressive Party and was later a member of its provincial executive committee in the Transvaal. In 1963 he campaigned successfully for election to the Transkei's first legislative assembly and then served as chairman of the opposition Democratic Party. In 1969 he was de­feated for reelection, and in 1971 defeated as a candidate for the Soweto Urban Bantu Council.

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