The BBC is reporting Zindziswa “Zindzi” Mandela, South African Ambassador to Denmark who was slated to become South Africa’s Head of Mission in Monrovia, Liberia has died. Mandela is the youngest daughter of South Africa’s first Black president Nelson Mandela and anti-apartheid activist Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. The cause of death has not yet been released, but Mandela died at a hospital in Johannesburg, South Africa.
In addition to being a stateswoman, Mandela was also an activist. In 1978, she wrote the book, Black as I Am, which featured a forward written by American civil rights icon Ambassador Andrew Young. The book was a collection of poems written by Mandela addressing her life as a Black woman living in an Apartheid state.
“Ms Mandela grew up at the height of the anti-apartheid struggle. With her father imprisoned on Robben Island, she endured years of harassment and intimidation by the apartheid regime, along with her sister Zenani, and her mother Winnie, says the BBC’s Vumani Mkhize.
Zindzi Mandela was the family member who read out Nelson Mandela’s rejection of then-president PW Botha’s offer for conditional release from prison at a public meeting in February 1985.”
Most recently, Mandela had been vocal about land reform in South Africa and faced a firestorm of controversy over “our land” Tweets calling for the return of land to Black South Africans. The Times (S.A.) is reporting Mandela died on the anniversary of the death of her older brother Thembekile, 24, who died in a car accident in Cape Town in 1969. She is survived by her husband Molapo Motlhajwa, four children Zoleka Mandela, Zondwa Mandela, Bambatha Mandela and Zwelabo Mandela-Hlongwane, two sisters Zenani Dlamini and Pumla Makaziwe (sister from another marriage). Zindziswa Mandela was 59.
This story is developing.
This post was written by Nsenga K. Burton, founder & editor-in-chief of The Burton Wire. Follow Nsenga on Twitter @Ntellectual.