News / South Africa / Politics

Gopolang Moloko
2 minute read
2 Apr 2019
11:09 am

We will miss Winnie Mandela’s guidance, says Mantashe on her death anniversary

Gopolang Moloko

The national chair says she was one of the very few who were left of the stalwarts and icons of the struggle.

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. Picture: Dumisani Sibeko

Today marks the death anniversary of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, who passed away last year as a result of a short illness.

The ANC’s national chair, Gwede Mantashe, tweeted footage elaborating on Madikizela-Mandela’s role in history. In the footage, Mantashe acknowledges that Madikizela-Mandela was outspoken and would often seek to rectify political issues.

“One of the very few who were left in the stalwarts and icons of the struggle, she is one of those who would tell us exactly what is wrong and what is right at any time. We’re going to be missing that because it is not just being an icon because of the length of your involvement in the struggle, you become an icon when you provide that guidance. We will be missing that guidance.”

Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema visited her gravesite at the Fourways Cemetery to pay tribute.

Madikizela-Mandela succumbed peacefully at the age of 81, surrounded by family and loved ones, at the Netcare Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg. As a result of her illness, she had been in and out of the hospital.

She was born in Bizana in the Eastern Cape and later moved to Johannesburg to study social work. She met anti-apartheid activist Nelson Mandela in 1975 and later married and had two children together with him. Their marriage was shortlived as he was arrested in 1963 and sentenced to life imprisonment.

Winnie was not deterred by his arrest and continued her contribution to the fight for the liberation of the people of South Africa.

Nelson was released in 1990, and the couple divorced in 1996, 37 years after their marriage.

Madikizela-Mandela later became a member of parliament after the country’s first democratic elections in 1994.

Social media has been abuzz with many remembering the struggle icon.

For more news your way, download The Citizen’s app for iOS and Android.