Even though we all knew it was coming, I couldn’t help but get teary eyed when I received a text that Nelson Mandela had passed away.
Some of you know that I am from Botswana, a country just north of South Africa. But my mother was born and raised there; and most of her family (my family) still lives there. My parents met and married in South Africa; and I don’t know the details, but I do know that the Bantu education system during the apariteid years had a lot to do with why we moved back to Botswana during the 70’s.
I’m pretty sure that move from Soweto to Gaborone, saved my family.
I once came across my parents “passbooks”. These were little books that gave the indigenous folks permission to move around South Africa, to move around their own homeland. Imagine needing a little passport to travel within America.
Madiba fought against that. Even before he joined the struggle as pro-peace, he was such an inspiration to his people. His behavior since walking out of prison has been exemplary. I wish ALL world leaders led by his example. He may have thrown bombs at post offices and other buildings prior to his prison-term, but his legacy will always be that of truth and reconciliation. That man’s strength is … indescribable.
I don’t know what else to say. There are no words…
Hamba kahle baba. And thank you, Re a leboga.