By Eddy Montilla.
Today when people cannot conceal with ceremonies and funerals the atmosphere of uncertainty produced by the physical absence of Nelson Mandela, I ask myself: Who said that Mandela died? Who invented this absurd story? Nelson Mandela, called Madiba, Tata by South Africans, was not only South Africa’s first black president (1994-199), but more than that: He was the first person with the widest vision of equality, reconciliation and the idea of saying goodbye to hatred.
Throughout history, many leaders have fought or sacrificed their lives for the sake of black people, African American people and others, but Mandela went further and fought all his life, so that people in his country could understand that white and black people can exist side by side, work together and, above all, be happy together. Because Mandela knew that the victory of a group over another only helps to make people feel resentful and prepares them to wait the best moment to start a new war. For Nelson Mandela, the problem was not to defeat white people, to hate Apartheid, but to understand them and foster racial reconciliation.
If 27 long years in prison on Robben Island and other places could not kill his moral convictions, if the passage of time could not break his iron will, could not crush his spirit and thoughts, then, how can people say that he died? Please take this fairy story somewhere else. For me, people who died are those who never lived, those who did nothing for their family, their country and for the others. And Nelson Mandela did a lot.
This article was originally published in the digital newspaper World And Opinion with Eddy Montilla.
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