Nelson Mandela the global icon and the leader of anti-apartheid movement in South Africa has died. He was 95.
The former South African President Nelson Mandela breathed his last and died at the age of 95 from complications from a recurring lung infection.
South African President Jacob Zuma announced Mandel’s passing, which marks the final chapter in a revolutionary life that changed South Africa forever.
Zuma spoke about his predecessor on national TV.
“Our nation has lost its greatest son, yet what made Nelson Mandela great was precisely what made him human,” Zuma said. “We saw in him what we seek in ourselves.”
Mandela’s journey and struggle remain one of the defining stories of the 20th Century. Trained as a lawyer, he became involved in politics after 1948.
As South Africa moved into a system of racial apartheid, he initially spoke out and espousing non-violent protests with the African National Congress (ANC).
However, he eventually founded a militant organization and was behind a bombing campaign in the early ’60s. He was sentenced to life in prison in 1962.
Mandela’s imprisonment soon became an international cause, and was eventually released in 1990 after intervention by President F. W. de Klerk.
A free man at last, he spearheaded South Africa’s transition from white-minority rule after that, marking the end of apartheid with the aid of de Klerk.
He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 and was elected South Africa’s first black president in 1994. He stepped down after five years in office.
Mandela is survived by his wife, Graca Machel, six children, and 17 grandchildren.