11 Steps in Mandela’s quest to Freedom

  • While in prison his eldest son was killed in a car accident, and to his disappointment, he was not allowed to go and bury him, despite this being a custom in his culture.
  • All across the world, cries of “Free Mandela” were spread, to an extend that the South African government considered it.

  • In 1982, Nelson Mandela, Walter Sisulu, Raymond Mhlaba, Andrew Mlangeni and later Ahmed Kathrada were sent to Pollsmoor Prison.
  • He rejected, through his daughter, Zindzi, South African President PW Botha’s offer to release him if he renounces violence.
  • Admitted to the Volks Hospital for prostate surgery. Discharged from hospital and returned to Pollsmoor Prison.
  • He was admitted a number of times to hospital, where he was diagnosed with tuberculosis in 1988, before being moved to Victor Verster Prison in Paarl, where he was held for 14 months in a cottage.
  • The ANC was unbanned on February 2, 1990 and he was released from prison on February 11, 1990. He walked out holding hands with his wife then Winnie Mandela.

  • The same year he was released from prison, he was elected ANC Deputy President.
  • Despite opposition from the majority of South Africans, Mandela committed to hold talks with the government on forming a new South Africa. Codesa negotiations took place between 1990 and 1993.
  • Chris Hani’s death on April 10, 1993 was a catalyst in making sure the Codesa negotiations were followed through, after a visibly irate Mandela lashed out at former President FW de Klerk.
  • After the Codesa negotiations, Mandela and De Klerk were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize on December 10, 1993.

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