BK Publishing pays tribute to the father of the Rainbow Nation.
The entire world is moved by the death of Nelson Mandela – a hero of the people, the father of a nation and an icon of peace, love and equality. On the 5th of December 2013 the world bid farewell to our hero and inspiration, who passed away at the age of 95. His legacy will impact and be remembered by many generations to come. Along with the rest of the world, we feel blessed to have had the opportunity to be inspired by the love, forgiveness and strength that Madiba embodied.
Mandela was born in a village called Mveso in Umata. When he moved to Johannesburg, where he studied to be a lawyer and founded the ANC youth league, little did he know that he was at the beginning of a journey that would change the lives of millions.
As the leader of a resistance movement Nelson Mandela was sentenced to life in prison. In total, he spent 27 years in prison until his release in 1990. He then entered into negotiations with President F.W. de Klerk to abolish Apartheid and establish multi-racial elections in 1994, in which he led the ANC to victory and became South Africa’s first black president.
What is the most remarkable about Nelson Mandela is not the different titles he acquired during his life - 'political activist', 'prisoner' or 'president', but rather the values he embodied within each situation. While being oppressed by the law, he showed passion, courage and hope within a situation that showed little prospect of success. As a prisoner, he showed patience and dignity despite his hopeless situation. As president, he embodied forgiveness, love and the willingness to forget the past, and he treated his success with humility and a
good sense of humour.
Mandela did not only claim to stand for peace and equality, but he also proved it through his actions by peacefully terminating the Apartheid regime and laying the foundations for a new, democratic South Africa.
“No one is born hating another person... People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human than its opposite.” We are forever grateful towards Nelson Mandela for setting the example of living a life of love and peace. May we continue to learn from his example and the legacy we have been blessed with.
Rest in peace Madiba. We will remember you always.
Words by Marike Ferreira
Illustrations copyright of George Asamoah-Awuah