The Late Nelson Mandela's Grandchildren Live By His Principles and Are Continuing His Amazing Legacy

The Late Nelson Mandela's Grandchildren Live By His Principles and Are Continuing His Amazing Legacy

On 18 July, South Africa and the rest of the world celebrate uTata Nelson Mandela's birthday by remembering the impact he had on the rest of the world. Even after his passing, Mandela's legacy lives on and his grandchildren are helping to carry it. Briefly News takes a look at some of the contributions made by Madiba's grandchildren over the years.

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The late Rolihlahla Nelson Mandela cemented himself as an honourary figure in history. His legacy involves being the first black president to be democratically elected in South Africa following years of apartheid rule.

Nelson Mandela's grandchildren, Mandla Mandela, Ndaba Mandela, Zoleka Mandela, Zondwa Mandela
Nelson Mandela's grandchildren continue to live by the same principles he lived by. Images: Jeff J Mitchell, Brian Stukes, J. Countess & Kevin Winter
Source: Getty Images

Mandela served 27 years in prison at Robben Island offshore of Cape Town. Upon his release and becoming president, uTata Madiba dedicated himself to his country and philanthropy across the globe.

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Mandela is globally acclaimed as a political figure who fought tirelessly for the liberation of South Africa against apartheid rule.

It is no surprise that Madiba's legacy has been celebrated over the years through global initiatives such as the 46664 concert that helped raise funds for many charitable causes and so much more.

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Even after his death, Mandela's legacy lives on in his grandchildren, who live by his principles and advocate for those who do not have the means to do so for themselves.

uTata Madiba had a total of 17 grandchildren and Briefly News will have a look at four of his grandchildren who decided to follow in his footsteps.

Mandla Mandela

Born in Orlando East on the outskirts of Johannesburg in Soweto, Zwelivelile Mandla Madiba is Madiba's eldest grandchild and the current tribal chief of the Mvezo Traditional Council.

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Mandla followed in his grandfather's footsteps and pursued a career in politics and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Politics from Rhodes University in Makhdanda. According to the government-sanctioned website, SA News, Mandla is known for continuously defending his grandfather's legacy when attacked.

Mandla is enthusiastic about rural development, especially considering that his grandfather was born and raised in the rural village of Qunu in the Eastern Cape. Mandla also has a home in Qunu.

Like his grandfather, Mandla has worked through the Mvezo Traditional Council to build clinics and a bridge between Mvezo and Ludondolo villages.

"Our government has felt it necessary that a bridge be built in Mvezo with an access road. That bridge and access road has brought many opportunities for the locals, our food gardening projects will now have quick and easy access to markets," Mandla explained.

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Mandla says his grandfather's passion for education has been passed down to his children and grandchildren. Mandela believed that education is the key to success and Mandla and the Mvezo Traditional Council, through the Mvezo Development Trust, have established the Mandela School of Science and Technology, which is funded by Siemens.

"We are trying to uphold that legacy of my grandfather towards education," he said.

Mandla has also worked alongside non-government organisations to establish an early childhood development centre geared toward preparing young children between the ages of zero and four for formal schooling.

Ndaba Mandela

Ndaba Thembekile Zweliyajika is Mandla's younger brother. He is an author, entrepreneur and political consultant. The 39-year-old has written six books which include 'Lessons from the Mountain: Life Lessons from My Grandfather, Nelson Mandela' and '11 Life Lessons from Nelson Mandela'.

Ndaba is also an Aids activist, which was brought on by the deaths of his parents due to the deadly disease. At the age of 11, Ndaba was orphaned and moved into his grandfather's house, where he was raised into adulthood.

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Following the death of his father, Makgatho Mandela, Madiba held a press conference to announce that he died of Aids. At the time, Aids was a taboo topic because of the stigma attached to it.

Ndaba stated in an interview with AIDS fonds that his grandfather's decision to make such an announcement as a prominent family was a powerful move.

"You see, if this disease could even affect the Mandela family and Nelson Mandela could talk openly about one of his own children having it, others would follow in his footsteps. That day, something changed," said Ndaba.

Ndaba has admitted that he is not as disciplined as his grandfather when it comes to activism; however, he holds the same values as Madiba did.

According to, Ndaba currently works in marketing and is a partner at the South African firm Kwenda Marketing.

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Zoleka Mandela

Zoleka Mandela is an author, activist and breast cancer survivor. The 42-year-old is the daughter of Zindziswa Mandela. She has written many books where she speaks about her struggles with addiction and battle with breast cancer.

Zoleka particularly struggled with drug and alcohol abuse.

In 2013, Zoleka launched the Zoleka Mandela Foundation, which is aimed at educating people about breast cancer, road safety and social responsibilities, according to the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

Zoleka was selected as one of the BBC's 100 Women in 2016, and she serves as a global ambassador for the UN on issues related to noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and children's health.

Zoleka is no stranger to tragedies and she recently opened up in Drum magazine about the deaths of two children, Zenani and Zenawe, who died a year apart. She has had to deal with a divorce, but she continues to thrive despite her shortcomings.

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Zondwa Mandela

Zoleka's younger brother, Zondwa Mandela, is the chairperson of the Mandela Legacy foundation. The 37-year-old stated on his LinkedIn page that he has inherited the responsibility of his grandparents' legacy of pursuing equality, human rights, equal opportunity and social justice.

Zondwa explained the Mandela Legacy Foundation was created to ensure that the principles his grandparents stood for are advanced.

The foundation has been operating for more than 10 years and has been able to impact the lives of more than 600 000 people across South Africa.

The foundation hopes to effect change in the lives of more than 10 million in the next decade. The Mandela Legacy foundation has also raised more than R408 million in donations to date, according to the foundation's website.

The money has been used for community projects, vocational education programmes and new job creation. The foundation focuses primarily on young people between the ages of 15 and 34.

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In February this year, Zondwa joined the IndyGeneUS Health Impact Advisory Board in the United States of America as he continues to expand his activism.

Zoleka Mandela honours Nelson Mandela’s 104th birthday qith emotional message about grandfather’s impact

Briefly News previously reported that Zoleka Mandela remembers her legendary grandfather Nelson Mandela fondly. Zoleka's grandfather was one of South Africa's most important freedom fighters, and his memory lives on.

Nelson Mandela was celebrated worldwide for his fight against apartheid. The iconic freedom fighter, lovingly dubbed "uTata" by Mzansi, has an internationally commemorated birthday.

TimesLIVE reports that the UN officially made Nelson Mandela's birthday an internationally recognised day that honours Mandela. Zoleka Mandela, the late icon's granddaughter, had a special message for what would be her grandfather's 104th birthday.

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Source: Briefly News

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