NELSON MANDELA – Let’s remember and celebrate his life – Tributes from across the world poured in last night following the death of the man known as the father of South Africa, Nelson Mandela, who died aged 95. The former freedom fighter emerged from almost three decades in prison in 1990 to lead his nation out of Apartheid, changing the country to its very core.
South African president Jacob Zuma announced Mandela’s passing in a special television broadcast last night.
“Our nation has lost its greatest son,” president Zuma said simply. “What made Nelson Mandela great was precisely what made him human. We saw in him what we seek in ourselves.”
“I am one of the countless millions who drew inspiration from Nelson Mandela’s life,” America president Barack Obama – who shares the accolade of having been his country’s first black president with Mandela – said. “Like so many around the globe, I cannot imagine my own life without the example that Nelson Mandela set. So long as I live, I will do whatever I can to learn from him.”
“He achieved more than could be expected of any man,” Obama said. “Today, he has gone home. And we have lost one of the most influential, courageous, and profoundly good human beings that any of us will share time with on this Earth. He no longer belongs to us – he belongs to the ages.”
“A great light has gone out in the world,” David Cameron echoed. “Nelson Mandela was a hero of our time. He showed us the true meaning of courage, hope, and reconciliation. His name will echo down the ages for his immense contribution to his country, to Africa, and to the world, and his tireless work for peace.”
In London, Mandela’s death was announced, poignantly, to an audience attending the premiere of the film of his life, Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, based on his autobiography. Two of his daughters Zindzi and Zenani were in the audience, along with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
Mandela had said before that he would be at peace with his passing when it came.
“Death is something inevitable,” he said. “When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his country and his people, he can rest in peace.”
His body will now lie in state for around 10 days, before being laid to rest – as he always wished – in Qunu, the tiny village where he grew up and where his family have lived for generations.
Let’s remember and celebrate his life…
Source: Lauren Milligan