Former President Rolihlahla Nelson Mandela was born on 18th July 1918 and he passed away on 5th December 2013. Many South Africans refer to this giant of the African Continent as ‘uTata’ (father) or just as Madiba, an honorary title adopted by elders of Mandela’s clan. Madiba, despite having to endure 27 years of imprisonment at the Robben Island by the then Apartheid government, when he emerged from prison on 11 February 1990, instead of being consumed by bitterness and temptation to revenge, he appeared with an amazing nobility and generosity that allowed him to understand the anxieties and concerns of his former enemies.
To South Africans, Madiba is the father of the Rainbow Nation and, above all, he embodies the country’s number one guiding principle of UBUNTU- an African humanist philosophy focusing on people’s allegiances and relations with each other. Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a 1984 Nobel Peace Prize laureate and a close friend of Madiba, describes the concept of Ubuntu as follows, “A person with Ubuntu is open and available to others, affirming of others, does not feel threatened that others are able and good, for he or she has a proper self-assurance that comes from knowing that he or she belongs in a greater whole and is diminished when others are humiliated or diminished, when others are tortured or oppressed.”
- Visit Mandela’s Gallery
- Visit Nelson Mandela at 90: The Celebration
- Visit Nelson Mandela Foundation
- Visit Nelson Mandela Museum
- Visit Nelson Mandela Media Centre
The Hague (Netherlands): A statue of former President Nelson Mandela
The “Stichting Standbeeld Nelson Mandela Den Haag” (the Nelson Mandela Statue Foundation) initiated the project to erect a statue in The Hague (Netherlands) in honour of former President Nelson Mandela in 2004. The Dutch artist, Arrie Schippers was commissioned in December 2010 to sculpt the statue, which is intended to symbolize the “Long Walk to Freedom”. The unveiling of the 3,5 metre-high bronze statue took place on 25 September 2012 was undertaken by Mr Ahmed Kathrada (representing the Mandela Family and the Nelson Mandela Foundation), Archbishop Desmond Tutu and the Netherlands Minister for European Affairs and Development Cooperation, Mr Ben Knapen. The statue stands on a specially created site on the Johan de Wittlaan, within the International Zone area of The Hague and in the vicinity of the Omniversum and Bel Air Hotel. The impressions of footprints made by local school children are imprinted on the surface of the square. The project was supported by the Municipality of The Hague.