About Martin Plaut 

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Born in South Africa in May 1950, Martin Plaut received his first degree in Social Science from the University of Cape Town, and an Honours degree in Industrial Relations from the University of the Witwatersrand, before going on to do an MA at the University of Warwick.
In 1978 he worked for a year as an Industrial Relations adviser to Mobil Oil before joining the British Labour Party as adviser on Africa and the Middle East. In 1984 he joined the BBC, working primarily on Africa. He was appointed Africa Editor, BBC World Service News, a position he held until retirement in November 2012. He has reported from most of East Africa, as well as some parts of West Africa, and specializes in the Horn of Africa and Southern Africa. 

For two years he was an Associate Fellow of the Royal Institute of International Affairs, leading their Africa research programme and continues to be an active member. He is currently a Fellow at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies. 
His publications include: 
  • Power! Black workers, their unions and the struggle for freedom in South Africa. Spokesman Press, 1984 (with Denis MacShane and David Ward)

  • South Africa: Out of the Laager? Fabian Society, 1991

  • War in the Horn Royal Institute of International Affairs, 1999 (with Patrick Gilkes)

  • Unfinished Business: Ethiopia and Eritrea at war Red Sea Press, 2005, (editor, with Dominique Jacquin-Berdal) 

  • Ethiopia and Eritrea: Allergic to persuasion. Royal Institute of International Affairs, 2007 (with Sally Healy)

  • David Killingray, with Martin Plaut: Fighting for Britain. African Soldiers in the Second World War. Boydell and Brewer. February 2010

  • Who rules South Africa? (with Paul Holden), Jonathan Ball publishers, Cape Town. 2012

  • Curious Kentish Town (with Andrew Whitehead), Five Leaves Publications, Nottingham, 2014