Nelson Mandela has received more than 250 awards that are in every way honorable. Keys to cities, and honorary degrees are among them, along with the peace prize.
In any Nelson Mandela interview you will find him to be a man of humor, honesty and humility. These are great attributes in any man, but Mandela can be considered among the greats.
One of those greats was Gandhi. Perhaps people can see something similar in Nelson Mandela and Gandhi. Mandela paid tribute to Gandhi with these words: “He dared to exhort nonviolence in a time when the violence of Hiroshima and Nagasaki had exploded on us; he exhorted morality when science, technology and the capitalist order had made it redundant; he replaced self-interest with group interest without minimizing the importance of self. India is Gandhi’s country of birth; South Africa his country of adoption” They were like-minded men.
Nelson Mandela, Obama – there is a mutual respect there of that there is no doubt. Barack Obama sent a videoed message to Mandela on his 91st birthday in which he displays the utmost respect to Nelson Mandela and his life’s achievements.
Possibly not that it means that much to the Mandiba himself but yes there is a Nelson Mandela statue – in fact more than one. There is one in Nelson Mandela Square (formerly Santon Square) in Johannesburg, and one in Parliament Square, London. There are also streets, and bridges named in his honor, and postage stamps.
The Nelson Mandela stadium in Port Elizabeths, South Africa seats 46,500 and has been built in anticipation of the 2010 FIFA world cup.
The Nelson Mandela museum is situated near his home of Qunu. Mandela has insisted that this museum should not be a tribute to just his own life, but to the cause he stood for and to uplift and develop the local community.
The Nelson Mandela Children’s fund supports children in South Africa with the aim to change the way society treats its children and youth.
The Nelson Mandela Foundation is a huge organisation with the aim to promote a just society built on Mandela’s vision and work.
Along with many peace and educational activities Mandela has been prominent and outspoken in the effort against AIDS. His son died from AIDS and it is often referred to as ‘the curse of Africa’. For Nelson Mandela AIDS is another war, another impossibility that can still be won. Since 2003 Mandela has supported the 46664 concerts to support HIV/AIDS victims and research. Apart from the initial 1988 concert when Mandela was still in prison the birthday concerts have all been run by 46664.
With all the awards and honorary degrees and accolades, the Nelson Mandela achievements have been many, certainly more than most men would achieve in a life time. From a young boy, schooled for royalty, to political activist, to prisoner, to President, to honoured scholar and statesman Nelson Rolihlahla has done so much for the world and will go down as one of histories greatest men. It is little wonder that July 18 (his birthday) has been named as ‘Mandela Day’. His contribution to the world has been great indeed.