- On this day 55 years ago, Mandela was announced to have been awarded the Joliot Curie Gold Medal for Peace
- He received the award in absentia as he was in prison
- This is the first of many awards he received while behind bars
On this day in 1964, the newspaper Leader announced that African National Congress leader, Nelson Mandela, had been awarded the Joliot Curie Gold Medal for Peace the previous week.
This announcement came just one day short of Mandela's birthday. It was the first of its kind that he was to celebrate behind closed doors. This was because he had recently been sentenced to life imprisonment after the Rivonia trial. It became the first of a number of awards uTata would receive during his 27 years of imprisonment.
The infamous eight-month-long Rivonia Trial resulted in Nelson Mandela, along with seven others, being sentenced to prison for their work against the white minority apartheid regime. The eight who were imprisoned were placed under arrest on 12 June 1964, a little over a month before Madiba’s 46th birthday.
Despite being imprisoned, Mandela was rewarded for his hard work by the World Peace Council (WPC) in 1964. The WPC awarded him the Joliot Curie Gold Medal of Peace, which is the highest honour one can receive from the WPC.
The presentation was made by Mr Houari Souyah, President of the Algerian Peace Committee in Algiers, to Dr Yussuf Dadoo, a former President of the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) and the leader of the anti-apartheid movement in Britain.
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