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Zindziswa Mandela. Incredible Anti-Apartheid Activist And Freedom Fighter Is Dead



South Africa’s ambassador to Denmark Zindziswa Mandela alias Zindzi Mandela is dead. Zindziswa Mandela who is the daughter of former president of South Africa Nelson Mandela and former staunch anti-apartheid activist, freedom fighter and politician Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, died in a hospital in Johannesburg on July 13, 2020, according to some media. She was 59.


Zindziswa Mandela dubbed the fearless in some quarters, was only 18 months when her father was sent to the notorious Robben Island prison in 1962 by the then brutal apartheid regime in South Africa. Notwithstanding, however, she grew up to become law graduate of the University of Cape Town and renown anti-apartheid activist, freedom fighter, and politician, despite perpetual harassment and intimidation by the authorities of the former apartheid regime.


At only 24 years old, she was chosen to deliver her father’s refusal of conditional release from prison offered by the then apartheid regime, to a public meeting held on February 1985. Her delivery speech was powerful and compelling, and made headlines throughout the world. The speech by the young Zindziswa Mandela is said to have propelled her to the global political scene as one of South Africa’s anti-apartheid activists and freedom fighters to reckon with. When Nelson Mandela was eventually released from prison in 1990 and became the president of South Africa in 1994, his youngest daughter Zindziswa Mandela was often sighted with him during official events.


Zindziswa Mandela became South Africa’s ambassador to Denmark in 2015, a position she held until her untimely death. As a politician in independent South Africa, she is said to have, among others, supported strongly calls for radical land reforms in the country, that she saw as vital for ensuring increased access to land by majority African South Africans.


According to South Africa government data as of 2017, South Africans of European descent who constitute only 9% of the country’s population, ridiculously own a staggering 72% of the country’s private arable land. Most of the land owned by the European South Africans was looted by their ancestors from African owners, during the colonial and apartheid eras. Because current ownership of the bulk of arable land in South Africa by minority European South Africans is an outcome of the colonial and apartheid land tenure pattern, it is very probable Zindziswa Mandela saw that as a remain of the colonial and apartheid systems that she fought against so hard with the aim of eradicating them once and for all. Her unwavering advocacy for radical land reforms in independent South Africa could therefore be a continuation of her struggle against colonialism and apartheid in the country. After all, how could one say that colonialism and apartheid in South Africa have been defeated if some of their injustices are still there and thriving?

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