The video, directed by Adrian Steirn, features Johnny Clegg’s 1987 song, Asimbonanga, albeit with a “new meaning.”
Asimbonanga, which in Zulu means “we have not seen him”, was written in protest to highlight the fact that Mandela was not visible to South Africans during his 27-year prison sentence due to state censorship of his images and depictions during apartheid.
“[The reimagined] phrase implies that the great work (Mandela) started in binding together a new nation has not yet been completed,” Woolworths said in the YouTube clip’s description.
“It is a call to the new South African generation to find inspiration in his life and work to continue his legacy,” the retailer added.
In the video, Johnny Clegg is seen teaching the song to young South Africans in a call to make Madiba’s dream for a thriving, united and democratic South Africa visible.
“Today when we say ‘Asimbonanga’, we’re actually saying ‘we still have a long way to go, it’s in our hands, it’s in the hands of the next generation’,” Clegg says in a voice over.
Winners of the 2014 MySchool Choir competition from Riebeek College Girls’ High in Uitenhage, in the Eastern Cape, are also featured in the video.
In 2013, director Adrian Steirn released the first batch of the 21 Icons Global Project, a photographic and filmic initiative which aims to celebrate icons of the 21st century.
The initiative was born out of Steirn’s desire to photograph Madiba.
Apart from Tata, the project featured struggle icons like Nadine Gordimer, and Ahmed Kathrada.