Every single year, we go through many occasions, festivals and experiences: some may be positive, some may be negative and others may be completely neutral. However, what we have to acknowledge is that no matter however many experiences we have and whatever feeling we will have, they will always be unique.
Just imagine this – you’re living in South Africa, in the 1920s, at a time when racial prejudice against black people had reached its penultimate stage: they were mainly treated as servants; they didn’t have any say in how the country was run and apartheid (laws to keep white people and black people apart) were being enforced.
One man had changed all of this. This man lived through his life, facing every experience, should definitely be remembered by us as a man that has conquered an accomplishment that we can only wish to complete. Nelson Mandela was an inspiration to all of us for the fight that he led.
At a time where black people were being marginalised extensively, Nelson Mandela even fled his own country in January 1962. However, he did not flee out of fear; while he was out on this trip, he managed to get military training in Morocco and Ethiopia and also travel to England and around the continent of Africa to get more support. Eventually, in his return in July 1962, he did get arrested at a police road block and sent to Robben Island prison. This was only one of the many times he went to prison, along with many other convictions.
While on trial in 1964, the “Speech from the Dock” became immortalised – “I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.” The courage and determination of this man is truly a wonder as he was
prepared to sacrifice his own life for the wellbeing of his fellow people.
Despite being sent to prison so many times, Mandela managed to become the prime minister of South Africa eventually in 1994, but only serving one term, keeping to his promise and leaving the office in 1984 – on his 80th birthday. He had finally achieved what he had wanted right from the beginning of his life – freedom for black people and equality amongst both white and black people.
Nelson Mandela also set up various trusts in and around South Africa, the most popular being Nelson Mandela’s Chlidren’s Fund. This was not only a man interested in achieving his own ambitions – he aimed to make the lives of everyone around him brighter and better.
The whole world was left sad at his demise on 5th December 2013.