The symbol of the fight against apartheid, Nobel Peace Prize and historical figure of international fame died 6 years ago. We’re talking about the great Nelson Mandela.
He was born in 1918 in Mvezo, located in the oriental part of South Africa. During the studies in law he joined a political organisation which fought against racial segregation, the African National Congress. Then, he became leader of this movement and was arrested in 1962 with the accusation of sabotage and of having projected and uprising against the Government supported by the National party.
Mandela strongly opposed himself to the apartheid regime, established in 1948. A regime with a series of laws which denied every kind of political, social and economic right to coloured people.
The policy of apartheid established a deeply distinction into racial groups: white, black, “coloured”, which is mixed.
After passing 27 years in jail, the hero of South Africa was released only in 1990. He worked for the process of democratic transition and won the elections. Therefore, in 1994, as the first President of the new South Africa, he granted the respect of human rights and the autonomy decision-making of the Government, called to face an economically devastated and dramatically divided reality.
At the end of the ‘90s he retired from private life, but never stopped his humanitarian action and went on to dedicate himself to human rights and focused on the fight against the AIDS with the Nelson Mandela Foundation. At the beginning of the 2000s his public appearances started to be limited in number and a few years later he was affected by health problems, until he died on the 5th of November 2013.
His figure was deeply important for the fight against discriminations of the black South African population.
We remember him for his extraordinary commitment to democratic ideals and values, quoting one of his most famous aphorisms: "I have learned that courage is not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it".