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Mandela at 90: How should his legacy be preserved?

July 18, 2008

mandela_90_poster_resized.jpgTributes poured in on Friday as anti-apartheid struggle icon and international statesman Nelson Mandela celebrated his 90th birthday.

Mandela is revered globally for using his personal charm to promote reconciliation in a racially divided country on the verge of a racial bloodbath after his release from 27 years in apartheid jails for battling white domination. The emerging multiracial or rainbow nation he moulded is seen as his greatest legacy. 

Johannesburg’s leading daily, Business Day, referred to this in its editorial: “It is no exaggeration to state that it is highly unlikely there would have been a negotiated transition from minority to majority rule in SA had it not been for Mandela’s wisdom, humility, dignity under pressure and willingness to compromise in the interests of peace.”

Former South African President F.W. de Klerk, the country’s last white ruler,  referred to Mandela in his tribute as “the most famous South African who ever lived and is universally regarded as one of the greatest figures of the 20th century”. The South African government, which Mandela headed, said in its birthday message: “Your vision has implanted in our society the seeds of social cohesion and national reconciliation to which prosperity will look back with awe and admiration.”

But 14 years after the election of Mandela marked the end of apartheid, South Africa is struggling with  serious political, economic and social issues compounded by rifts and tension within the ruling African National Congress, which was the vanguard of the liberation struggle. Is Mandela’s legacy under threat? Send a birthday message to Madiba and have your say on how his great legacy should be preserved.

Comments

Madiba, How can every white and black person in South Africa ever thank you enough for having saved our country from civil war and bloodshed, for having been great enough to forgive and forget the incredible hardships you endured personally–all for the benefit of a united nation. You put to shame a great many leaders worldwide who are only thinking of themselves, how to amass a personal fortune and more power. You are one of the few who think of and care for your people–all of them! In the 57 years of my existence I have never had a hero–I have one now!

Posted by Benita Steyn | Report as abusive
 

He already left a new generation behind, some others should look too, and he is already preserved by his people.Now when we talk about preserved at aglobal level, everybody knows about Mandela and his great leader profile, but does anybody folows him?

Posted by Burca Alice Larisa | Report as abusive
 

Nelson Mandela is the best thing that has happened to humanity as a whole we especially Africa is so so very proud of you may you live long.Long live Africa and more importantly long live my mentor once again we are proud of you…..

Posted by Sunny Moses | Report as abusive
 

Nelson Mandela not only an african Hero, he is also a person of peace and stand for human right. Unfortunately , many african leaders can not learn from manadela, not becuase they could not, but they are selfish, Arrogant and uneducatted.These african leader including President Robert Mugabe of Zumbabia and A tortur and killer of Meles Zenaw of Ethiopia. Let us pray for all bad leaders of Africa to give them good heart. Let us also admire and celeberate the hiro of the world, Nelson Manadel the peace of a man.

Posted by Dawit | Report as abusive
 

hey madiba happy birthday and may god balees you and grant you many more years and may he protect you and your family.

 

thank you

 

I was 27 (the same length of time as Nelson Mandela served in prison) when in 1994 he was elected president. As a result all South Africans were released. Thank you President Mandela. Congratlations on reaching your lifes goals and tenth decade. Long live President Mandela.

Sincerely

Clive Rubin.

Posted by Clive Rubin | Report as abusive
 

Nelson Mandela’s legacy should include his fight for a free press.
Because of apartheid he saw first hand, in the 20th century, the perils that result when the voice of every person is silenced and only ideology speaks.
He fought for the world press to tell the incredible stories of the down trodden in his homeland. And, they responded. It became proof that the story of a people is a powerful weapon against injustice. Today, as a result of Mr. Mandela’s insistence, many more stories are being told and each time the voice of people is shared the world prospers.
Happy Birthday Madiba!

 

Nelson Mandela’s legacy should include his fight for a free press.
Because of apartheid he saw first hand, in the 20th century, the perils that result when the voice of every person is silenced.
He fought for the world press to tell the incredible stories of the down trodden in his homeland. And, they responded.
Today, as a result of Mr. Mandela’s insistence, many more stories are being told and each time the voice of people are shared the world prospers.
Happy Birthday Madiba!

 

Mandel is one of the greatest things that ever happened to humanity. To preserve his legacy, I think his works and life should be studies as subject in primary to secondary schools across Africa.

 

Mandela is one of the greatest things that ever happened to humanity. To preserve his legacy, I think his works and life should be studied as subject in primary to secondary schools across Africa.

 

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