Nelson Mandela was a politician and an anti-apartheid activist who served 27 years in prison. He is often referred by South Africans as the father of the nation.
On 11 February 1990 Mandela walked out of Victor Verster prison, now Drakenstein Correctional Centre.
A huge crowd of around 40,000 people was gathering outside. Mandela raised a clenched fist and shouted “Amandla”, a term in the Xhosa and Zulu languages meaning “Power”.
”Today, the majority of South Africans, black and white, recognize that apartheid has no future,” he added. “Our march to freedom is irreversible.”
He became the President of the African National Congress after his release. In 1994, he was elected as the first black President of his country in a multiracial election.
Mandela has received 250 honors for his activism. He has received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993. Nelson Mandela is honored by the Soviet Orders of Lenin and the US Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Nelson Mandela was born on 18 July 1918 in Mvezo, Umtata in South Africa. He became the voice of blacks against all the atrocities in South Africa.
Nelson Mandela has rightly said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
Here is a chronology of life events of Nelson Mandela:
- 26 June 1952, he violated South Africa curfew with 51 others
- 06 December 1956, he was arrested for political activities along with 156 others in South Africa
- 29 March 1961, he was acquitted in Pretoria after a 4.5-year trial
- 04 August 1962, the South African police captured him.
- 05 August 1962, he was arrested for illegally leaving South Africa.
- 20 October 1963, trial on him with 8 others begins on the conspiracy.
- 12 June 1964, he was sentenced life in prison in South Africa
- 17 July 1964, Nelson Mandela was awarded the Joliot Curie Gold Medal for Peace.
- 13 June 1980, the UN Security Council exclaimed for release of Nelson Mandela
- 12 May 1984, Mandela met his wife after 22 years
- 31 January 1985, South African President P. W. Botha offered Nelson Mandela, that he could be set free if he denounces violence
- 12 August 1988, Mandela got treated for Tuberculosis at hospital
- December 1998, Nelson Mandela was transferred to Victor Vester Prison, Capetown
- 17 May 1989, Nelson Mandela received a BA from the University of South Africa
- 05 July 1989, South African President P. W. Botha visited ANC leader Nelson Mandela
- 02 February 1990, South African President F. W. de Klerk promised Nelson Mandela to set him free & legalize ANC & 60 other political organizations
- 10 February 1990, South African President F. W. de Klerk announced Nelson Mandela will be freed on February 11, 1990
- 11 February 1990, Nelson Mandela was released after 27 years imprisonment in South Africa
- 22 June 1990, Nelson Mandela addressed the United Nations Special Committee against Apartheid in New York.
- 23 June 1990, ANC (African National Congress) leader Nelson Mandela went on a US tour and was welcomed in Boston
- 26 June 1991, ANC leader Nelson Mandela addressed the congress
- 05 September 1991, Nelson Mandela was chosen as president of ANC
- 30 June 1992, South African ANC President Nelson Mandela met with UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali at Dakar
- 15 October 1993, Nelson Mandela and South African President F. W. de Klerk were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
- 07 March 1994, ANC chief Nelson Mandela rejected the demand for a separate homeland in South Africa by white right-wingers
- 06 May 1994, Nelson Mandela and the ANC won South Africa’s first post-apartheid election
- 10 May 1994, Nelson Mandela was sworn in as South Africa’s 1st black president
- 01 October 1994, South African President Nelson Mandela visited the US
- 07 July 1996, Nelson Mandela stepped down as South African President
- 17 July 2004, Nelson Mandela called for a commitment by the world to take action against AIDS
- 17 July 2018, Barack Obama gave a speech honoring Nelson Mandela and warning of “strongman politics” in Johannesburg, South Africa