I met Nelson Mandela in the first local government election were I stood as the ANC ward candidate. Many of our youth at that time wanted to be like Mandela and Walter Sisulu. They were, and are, honourable leaders.
Mandela influenced my life even before I met him. Some comrades had staged a play about Mandela in 1985 when I was about 15-years-old and not at all sure about who this man was and the history of our struggle. That play got me involved in the struggle, and as the years went by I learned what Mandela and other comrades had given to the fight to free our country from the NP (National Party) apartheid regime.
The day I met Mandela for me was beyond an honour. He was so relaxed, the way he shook my hand, as if we had met before. It was as if, somehow, comrades that don’t know each other are brothers even before they have met.
I am not that crazy about photographs, but this photo hangs in my dining room. It is the one thing that cannot be bought. When my son asked me if I knew Mandela I replied that all knew Mandela but only a few had the honour to meet him in person.
Quote: "All knew Mandela but only a few had the honour to meet him in person."