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Historical Facts

5 Dec 2013

todayDecember 5, 2022

Background

South African president Nelson Mandela dies at 95
On December 5, 2013, Nelson Mandela, the former activist who overcame a nearly three-decade prison stint to become president of South Africa, passes away after years of struggling with health issues. He was 95. “Our nation has lost its greatest son. Our people have lost a father,” South African President Jacob Zuma said. “What made Nelson Mandela great was precisely what made him human. We saw in him what we seek in ourselves.”
Mandela was known as a freedom fighter, prisoner, civil rights leader, political leader and symbol of integrity and reconciliation not only for South Africa, but for the world. His lifelong mission to end apartheid started when he left school early to join the the African National Congress (ANC). He rose quickly in the organization, and was elected president of the organization in 1950. It was in 1960 that Mandela’s efforts turned more militant, sparked when police opened fire on a group of unarmed protestors in the Sharpeville township, killing 69 people.

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