Respect the Bhaca Kingdom

Dear Zwelonke,

First, I must congratulate you on your historic coronation and wish you  well as you gain momentum in mastering your pivotal role to lead the Xhosa nation and restore its dignity.

The event on May 15 at Nqadu was a resounding success and we equally appreciate that our government went all out to make the coronation an event befitting of a king.

Xhosa King Mpendulo Sigcawu Aaaah Zwelonke Tshawe lamaTshawe Respect the Bhaca Kingdom

I must also welcome the commitment of President Jacob Zuma’s government to working with South African royals.

We, the Bhaca people, commit ourselves to mutual respect of and co-existence with other nations, such as Xhosas, and taking this country forward.

His Majesty, having listened to your speech on the day, I realised that if I did not respond to correct your statement as the direct descendant of King Ncapayi ka Madzikane,  as the king of the Bhacas and on behalf of the Bhaca people, I would be failing our people, the Bhacas.

I listened repeatedly to your speech with great interest, from the perspective of royal leadership and at a personal level as we have had personal encounters.

This time, I must address you at a royal leadership level, more especially because as leaders we need to understand that it can sometimes be very easy to mislead nations. In this respect, I would like to pick up from your speech when you said “Umhlaba wamaXhosa uqala ukusukela emzimkhulu ukuyoma eKapa” (The land from uMzimkhulu to Cape Town is the land that belongs to Xhosas as a nation).

Mntwanenkosi, this statement is misleading, disappointing, mischievous and irresponsible of a king. I will elaborate.

King Madzikane II AmaBhaca e1432825294948 Respect the Bhaca Kingdom

King Madzikane II Diko of the AmaBhaca Kingdom

The land of the indigenous Xhosa people does not start with uMzimkhulu to Cape Town. The land you are referring to also belongs to the Bhacas – in particular  uMzimkhulu, iXopo, Port Shepstone, Harding, Kokstad, Bulwer, and others, until Mount Frere. I must also remind you that the land of the Bhaca people stretches all the way from Tugela River in KwaZulu-Natal until the Thina River before you cross over to amaMpondomise nation.

I have not come across any literature or oral history that traces the legacy of the Xhosas in any of these areas.

On the correct platform we can further unpack the initial interactions between the Bhacas, the Xhosas and other nations in the Eastern Cape – which I think is necessary.

Your starting point will be to understand the boundaries of the land that belongs to indigenous Xhosa people.

We Bhacas are in the Eastern Cape, while some of us, because of provincial demarcations, are in KZN. I must assert, the home of the Bhacas is in the Eastern Cape, KwaBhaca or Mount Frere.

This speaks to the misconception that the Eastern Cape is resident to Xhosas only, which is mere ignorance to some but mischief in the hands of the pedlars of propaganda.

Your Majesty, we, the Bhacas have fought many battles and wars to earn the right to exist and be established as this kingdom, independent of any other, but living alongside others, like Xhosas.

We have all become diverse, but there is something that binds us  together, that we are all Africans, in particular South Africans. Wars and such battles have long been over. We are now one country striving to promote tolerance and unity.

We should not lose sight of this by making irresponsible statements that will propel us to defend ourselves along tribal lines. The enemy is not among us anymore, but out there – and that enemy wants us to digress into the old feudal system and tribal wars.

The notion of Xhosa speaking people versus indigenous Xhosas must not be confused. It must be understood within the context of linguistic imperialism (the imposition of one language on speakers of other languages) where the Xhosa language was imposed as a mother tongue in the education system for the majority of other Africans in the Eastern Cape.

This was a silly arrangement made by colonial government and the oppressive former Transkei government simply entrenched this suppressive practice.

All these people were, however, stupid because this has come back to bite the performance of the public education system.

But a nation’s indigenous language is not powder; it does not just disappear in thin air. The imposition of this language “Xhosa”, in school in particular, has resulted in a fault line where people from other kingdoms and nations are being referred to as Xhosas, whereas they are not, but rather Xhosa-speaking people.

A foreign language does not change one’s identity. Even as you are able to speak English, does not make you an Englishman. These Xhosa speaking people in the Eastern Cape also learn Xhosa as they learn English.

In an interview at your coronation, the chair of the Eastern Cape House of Traditional Leaders, Nkosi Ngangomhlaba Mathanzima, emphatically said  “abantu abantetho isisixhosa” (Xhosa-speaking people).  He further referred to mutual respect among nations in the Eastern Cape. He did not refer to everyone as indigenous Xhosas. As he cautiously referred to this, someone who understands this dynamism would have seen his wisdom and realised what it was he was bringing to our attention.

We, Bhacas, are indebted to our forebears for our own language, culture and practice. At household level, Bhacas “bayabhobha”,  speak Bhaca as our language. This is why Bhaca learners perform badly in what is referred to as their “mother-tongue language” at school, which it is not.

As kings, it is expected we understand this. Bhacas are not Xhosas and therefore our land belongs to us as Bhacas, which therefore invalidates and rejects the claim that Xhosa land starts with uMzimkhulu.

It is misleading and disappointing that you would mislead your people with this statement. I am not sure of the intention if the king of a nation claims another nation’s land. But the risk is that it could be very easy to assume provocation and disrespect from the opposite side.

It is irresponsible particularly in the light of  what has recently happened in KwaZulu-Natal, which not only fuelled barbaric xenophobic attacks but further injected pessimism about the institution of royal leadership.

We must not accept it if leaders, more especially royals, become reckless. If we do, we then must accept the portrayal of  the institution as a threat rather than an asset in a democracy.

There is nothing wrong with languages influencing one another, but I submit that some people today do not know if they are speaking real Xhosa or something close to it. This, for me, means Xhosa itself as a language is at risk as well. For this reason, I believe we should rather be supporting one another in developing the languages of our respective kingdoms and nations.

Land is a sensitive issue. Bhacas have fought historic wars to be where we are today, a fact that made others uncomfortable. We therefore deserve respect from other nations surrounding us, as we return the mutual favour.

I find it worrisome that when colonial wars are over, when  21 years into our democracy we should be uniting and spearheading social cohesion, irresponsible statements are made that devalue fellow Africans.

In our democracy, the Freedom Charter has created an environment where Xhosas, Zulus and Bhacas for example, can live anywhere in the country. However that does not mean all parts of the land belongs to the nation you necessarily find in one particular place. There are Bhaca people in Limpopo, for example, but this does not mean our royal leaders should start claiming this land.

We are all South Africans and as the Freedom Charter states, “South Africa belongs to all who live in it”. Within this context, we must celebrate unity as diverse nations in Eastern Cape and in the country. We need one another and we must be able to call on each other for support. These nations can still live alongside each other with mutual respect. We must not be fuelling differences and hatred. We ought to emphasise principles of inclusivity and pluralism across ethnic lines. This is what we commit to as Bhacas.

On behalf of the Bhacas, I wish you and the Xhosas all the best in all your efforts as you reunite your people.

Madzikane II Diko

Ingonyama: KwaBhaca Kingdom

The Coronation of AmaXhosa King, HM Zwelonke Sigcawu

The Coronation Ceremony of the King of AmaXhosa, His Majesty Mpendulo Sigcawu, Aah! Zwelonke! is a very noteworthy & momentous occasion. It has rekindled in many of us a sense of pride and the need for us to reconnect with our African roots.

Xhosa King Mpendulo Sigcawu Aaaah Zwelonke Tshawe lamaTshawe The Coronation of AmaXhosa King, HM Zwelonke Sigcawu15 May 2015 – A historic day for AmaXhosa as we witnessed the coronation of His Majesty, King Mpendulo ka Xolilizwe Sigcawu. Ahh! Zwelonke! The coronation took place at Nqadu Great Place in Willowvale, KuGatyana, Eastern Cape Province. This was the first coronation of a King in a democratic South Africa and the first in 50 years in the Xhosa Kingdom. The last one was that of His Majesty, King Xolilizwe ka Zwelidumile Sigcawu in 1965.
The month of May was chosen for one specific reason. In the Xhosa calendar, it is known as the King Hintsa month, commemorating the Great Warrior King Hintsa’s death, Ahh! Zanzolo!, who was killed on the 12th May 1835 by British troops, specifially, George Southey and Harry Smith. King Hintsa ka Khawuta, commonly known as Hintsa The Great, was born in 1789 and became the 4th paramount Chief of the Gcaleka sub-group of the Xhosa Kingdom from 1820 until his death in 1835. He played a very big role in defending the land of AmaXhosa against European colonisation and grew up in the most difficult period in the Xhosa Kingdom. He led many wars in the 100 year Wars of Resistance, sometimes known as the Frontier Wars or “Africa’s 100 Years War”, which began in 1779 until 1879. He was basically born in war, grew up in war and died in war, defending Africa and its people against the thieves from Europe who came to steal the land and the wealth of the African people.

Xhosa Kingdom Family tree 300x300 The Coronation of AmaXhosa King, HM Zwelonke SigcawuOn 11 December 1834, a Cape government commando party killed a senior Xhosa chief, which infuriated the Xhosa people, marking the beginning of the sixth War of Resistance (6th Frontier War also known as Hintsa’s war). In response to that, an army of 10,000 men, led by warrior Chief Maqoma, a brother of the chief who had been killed, swept across the frontier into the Cape Colony, and avenged the Xhosa chief’s killing. The British, led by their governor Benjamin d’Urban and Colonel Harry Smith working with Boer commandos under Piet Retief, retaliated and launched counter attacks on the Xhosa people. Chief Maqoma ka Ngqika and his other brother, Chief Tyali ka Ngqika fought bravely in that war, but unfortunately they were overwhelmed by British & Boer gunfire and their commandos and they had to retreat to the Amathole Mountains. Benjamin d’Urban believed King Hintsa ka Khawuta, Paramount Chief of the Gcaleka Xhosa, commanded authority over all og hte Xhosa tribes and therefore held him responsible for the initial attack on the Cape Colony and he and Harry Smith demanded more than 50 000 cattle as compensation for the 1834 war, and that Hintsa tell all Xhosa chiefs to stop fighting the British. Hintsa was then held captive until the terms were met. Hintsa sent word to Maqoma, his military commander, telling him to hide the cattle.

On May 12, 1835 Hintsa, who was about 45, was riding as a prisoner, his safety assured in the company of British soldiers led by Governor Harry Smith. Seeing that hee was being betrayed by the British, Hintsa tried to flee British captivity on horse back, but was chased, and Harry Smith order George Southey to shoot him. After they shot him, they then mutilated his body. That moment marked one of the worst tragedies ever to happen to the Xhosa people. From then on Xhosa people would not trust the British, as they had betrayed and killed King, Hintsa ka Khawuta.
King Zwelonke’s coronation on this day then marks the beginning of a new era in the Xhosa Kingdom. An era to restore the dignity. An era to finish the age old battle for the land of African people that was dispossessed by colonialists, as to this day, African people only own less than 20% of South Africa and the remaining 80% plus is still in the hands of white people.
It is reported that about 10 000 people, including royals from African, Britain and other parts of the world as well as dignitaries from various countries descended to Nqadu Great Place to celebrate this historic event.
President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma delivered the keynote address and handed over the certificate of recognition to King Zwelonke. The Eastern Cape Judge President Themba Sanfoni swore the King into the throne.
Many South African kings and queens, houses of traditional leaders, Contralesa all attended the event.
Also in attendance from Africa and abroad will be leaders of the Forum of Kings, Sultans, Sheiks, Chiefs and Princes of Africa, the Institute of Royalty and African diaspora, as well as South African cabinet ministers, judges, clergy members, premiers and MECs.

Xhosa King Zwelonke Sigcawu coronation with President Jacob Zuma Pravin Gordhan The Coronation of AmaXhosa King, HM Zwelonke Sigcawu

Zwelonke is the most senior leader of the Xhosa royal family, the leader of the Xhosa Royal Council and overall head of the Tshawe royal clan.

For many, including historians and the king himself, this will be their first time to witness such an event. Zwelonke was not yet born when his late father, King Xolilizwe Sigcawu, was inaugurated in 1965, as he was only born in 1968.
Most of the Eastern Cape and parts of the Western Cape used to be the sovereign state of the Xhosa kingdom, with the king as its supreme leader. The sovereignty of the Xhosa kingdom was liquidated after the Ninth Frontier War, which was the last war of dispossession fought between the Xhosas and British colonialists and AmaXhosa resisted with great resilience against the Britons for over 100 years.

Zwelonke is the first Xhosa king to ascend to the throne after the emancipation of South Africa from colonial and apartheid regimes.

He is the founding member of the Forum of Kings, Sultans, Sheiks, Chiefs and Princes of Africa, which was officially launched in Benghazi, Libya in 2008.

He is also the father of the Institute of African Royalty.

His coronation marks the 180th anniversary of the brutal murder of one of his most celebrated and bravest ancestors, the great King Hintsa, Ahh! Zanzolo! by the British army in 1835.

Zwelonke has honoured a number of leaders who have followed in Hintsa’s footsteps with the highest royal accolade, referred to as the King Hintsa Bravery Award, started in 1999.
After his coronation, King Zwelonke challenged South Africans not to attack foreigners but instead focus on working harder.
“Let us live in peace and work.”
The King maintained that the Xhosa kingdom is against the abuse of foreigners by South Africans.

“In the books that some of us have read, we found out that some of our politicians went to hide in other countries, fighting for the freedom of this country. They were treated well and we appreciated that.
“Please, let us tolerate each other.”
The coronation was a day full of festivities, speeches and cultural displays.

Fifteen cows, 30 sheep and 100 chickens were reportedly slaughtered for the occasion.

XCUS (Xhosa Cultural Union of Students) 2015 Opening Function

XCUS Xhosa Culture 31 e1431895507242 XCUS (Xhosa Cultural Union of Students)  2015 Opening FunctionXCUS (Xhosa Cultural Union of Students) is a cultural society established within the University of the Witwatersrand.  It is the oldest cultural society at the University and was founded in 2001. Its aim is not only to unite Xhosa speaking students within the university but to also establish a sense of identity and cultural knowledge in the space of the educational institution.

XCUS encompasses young vibrant students, majority of them coming from the Eastern Cape.

XCUS Xhosa Cultural Union of Students Xhosa Culture 71 e1431894435112 XCUS (Xhosa Cultural Union of Students)  2015 Opening Function

XCUS 2015 Executive Committee Members (L-R)
Aphelele Makapela (Maduna) – Chairperson – 3rd year Chemical Engineering
Simbongile Ndlangisa (MaMokoena) – Public Relations Officer – 3rd year BA
Gcotyelwa Mdoda (Mamqhinebe) – Deputy Chairperson – 2nd year BA
Sibabalwe Mzokwana (Mabhedla) – Treasurer – 2nd year BSc
Ava Hlazo (MaKheswa) – Secretary – 2nd year Urban & Regional Planning
Yonela Prusent (Majola) – Cultural Officer – 2nd year BA
Odwa Abraham (Mqadi) – Academic Officer – 2nd year Post Graduate LLB

This year on the 02 May 2015 it held its opening function and celebrated 14 years since its inception. The theme for this year’s event was: Singama Afrika, singabantu abanye. Losely translated to mean: We are Africans, We are one! The theme was inspired by the recent Xenophobic/Afrophobic attacks that engulfed certain parts of KZN and Gauteng. Well known and beloved long standing SABC 1 Xhosa News reader, Noxolo Grootboom was given the task to unpack this theme. She started by encouraging students to take and use the opportunity of being at such an educational institution wisely as most people were unable to access such education due to challenges of the past, herself included.

She gave an amazing speech in IsiXhosa, first pointing out how interconnected we as Africans are. How her own identity is made up of personal connection to people from all over the continent, pointing out how she has blood relatives in Zimbabwe, among the Sotho, coloureds and some cousins who are white.

XCUS Xhosa Culture 26 e1431893794964 XCUS (Xhosa Cultural Union of Students)  2015 Opening Function

Noxolo Grootboom

“The story of humanity is written in our body parts that harbour information of our origins, our dna. Being black does show how we look like but does not tell us who we are. Being an African connects us with the land. It connects us with our history. It connects us with our traditions & customs. We are all Africans because our lineage is in Africa. If you don’t know who you are, as I have just introduced myself, and where you come from, there’s not much else you’re going to know.”

“That is why it’s important for you to not be unsure or ashamed of your African-ness.”

“Being an African means that if you are born in Africa, Africa is also born in you. Being an African is about caring and Africa and its people. Being an African is about having a strong bond with fellow Africans. Being an African is about respecting the diverse African traditions, and cultural value systems. Being an African is about being united towards a common vision with fellow African making use of our diverse talents and abilities. We are Africans, We are one!”

XCUS Xhosa Culture 4 e1431893929951 XCUS (Xhosa Cultural Union of Students)  2015 Opening Function

Zolani Mali of Sojini Cultural Society

Sojini Cultural Society gave a brief history of their society and its purpose. It is a group whose purpose is to help Xhosa people from all over the world to connect & unite and is mainly made up of Xhosa people from outside South Africa. It pointed out how there are so many Xhosa people in many African countries who have been based in those countries for more than 100 years and still maintain their language, traditions and cultural value systems.

There are Xhosa people who were taken out of South African by Cecil John Rhodes in the 1880s, taken to work in his mining operations in the former Southern & Northern Rhodesia. Rhodes unfortunately left most of them stranded in those countries and they never managed to get back home. They are classified as foreigners when they come to South Africa though they are South Africans and Xhosa by origin. Sojini pointed out how the borders that were drawn up by European colonialists at the Berlin conference of 1885 have divided African people and that we now have a responsibility to unite as African people, because indeed we are one. Zolani Mali, an executive member of Sojini is one such person affected by the borders created by colonialists. He is a 4th generation descendant of a priest from Ngqamakhwe, Eastern Cape who left in the 1890s and settled in the then Southern Rhodesia with his wife MaMiya and son. He is now a resident of Bulawayo, Zimbabwe and they have found that there are many other Xhosa people based in  Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, Malawi and many other African countries.

This also clearly showed how unnecessary it is to educate the South African public in curbing Xenophobia from ever happening because indeed, We are Africans, we are one!
Jessica Mbangeni, a well-known praise poet who also praised the Xhosa King during his coronation in Nqadu Great Place, Willowvale on the 15th May 2015 also gave an inspiring talk on the need for Africans to unite and the need for cultural identity and self-knowledge. Mbangeni touched on a number of issues and emphasised that Africans need to learn to do things for themselves. Sivuke sizenzele! African students must get the qualifications and use them to solve Africa’s problems, invent products and ideas that will advance African people. We are Africans, we are one!

KwaBhaca Kingdom Umkhosi wokukhahlela (womhlanga) 2014

Umkhosi wokukhahlela Bhaca Royal Reed ceremony Elundzini Royal Residence KwaBhaca 5 Bhaca Maidens KwaBhaca Kingdom Umkhosi wokukhahlela (womhlanga) 2014

King Madzikane II dancing in front of the Bhaca maidens at Umkhosi wokukhahlela 2014 in Elundzini Great Place, Ncunteni village, Mount Frere

We recently had an opportunity to speak to the King of the Bhaca Kingdom, King Madzikane II, Ahh! Tholelengwe!!! Thandisizwe ka Dilizintaba ka Dingumhlaba ka Mabhijela i ka kaMthakathi kaQoza ka Diko ka Ncaphayi ka Madzikane ka Khalimeshe ka Vebi ka Wabane ka Didi (Zelemu) ka Lufulwenja, ka Mageba, ka Gumede kaZulu kaNtombela kaMalandela kaLuzumana kaMdlani kaNkosinkulu. We spoke to him about this year’s Umkhosi wokukhahlela (womhlanga) held on the 27th September 2014 at Elundzini Royal Residence, KwaBhaca Great Place , Ncunteni village in Mount Frere.

Q: What is Umkhosi Wokukhahlela?

A: Umkhosi wokukhahlela is a cultural practice of AmaBhaca that seeks to restore and entrench the dignity of the Bhaca Kingdom, through its women and young girls. It’s a response to a need to reignite the principle that the beauty of a nation is seen through its children, young girls and women. It’s about showing the beauty of AmaBhaca. If we respect our children, youth and women, we will be respected as this nation. This is an old practice which we used to observe. However today it’s also our attempt to respond to HIV, teenage pregnancy, school dropouts. It’s about purity while instilling a sense of worth and focus amongst young people.

 

Q: What is the history behind this very significant event?

A: Annually, we made a decision as part of the reconstruction of Bhaca Kingdom that we must celebrate our children and women as a nation to show how much they mean to us.

 

Q: When and why did you revive this age-old tradition?

A: On my return and taking the role to lead this nation, weI had to think about the main building blocks that will take the Bhaca Kingdom forward. This was about laying the foundation. This is the foundation – instilling a value system. This was conceptualised in 2009 when I came back to the Kingdom.

1 Umkhosi wokukhahlela Bhaca Royal Reed ceremony Elundzini Royal Residence KwaBhaca 6 Bhaca Maidens KwaBhaca Kingdom Umkhosi wokukhahlela (womhlanga) 2014

Bhaca maidens bringing traditional beer and a traditional drink (imbile/inqodi) to the King

Q: Why is it important for girls to partake in this magnificent event in the Bhaca calendar?

A: Young girls are the face of this nation (ziintyatyambo zesi sizwe) and If we cannot show our love for them first, they will not be respected elsewhere. This provides an opportunity for them to be taught very fundamental principles of life based on our culture as amaBhaca, as you would remember that some are coming from child headed households or without parents. As it takes a village to raise a child, this provides equal opportunity for the children who take part. It’s also a platform that protects them from the ills of the society such as rape and gender based violence. There is more to it. Also, we do not have dustbin for any child in this nation therefore, all children regardless of circumstances must be allowed to participate.

 

Q: What is your vision for this spectacular event and for the Bhaca Kingdom as a whole for the near future?

A: The programme must carry on for as long as this nation lives. This Kingdom must arrive to a point where its liberation will be measured by having its people taking pride in saying that they areAmaBhaca equal to all other Kingdoms of the World. We should not shy away from the fact that we are still oppressed.

 

Umkhosi wokukhahlela ceremony 2014 was a success, though only on its third year, more than 500 girls who undergo virginity testing, attended the ceremony as proud iintombi nto!!! Indlovukati yesizwe samaBhaca, Queen Nosizwe, MaMjoli, Wushe, Qubulashe, Nonina, sindzangonwalu, Nongwenya was at the ceremony. Some of the speakers on the day were Mr Zola Zembo Mlenzana  & Mr Lumko Mtimde from the Bhovu clan and CEO of the Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA),  who encouraged the proud Bhaca maidens to  focus on developing and empowering themselves with education for a bright future.

Ahh! Tholelengwe! Zulu, Khalimeshe, Nofis’ ongafi ofa ngamaloyo kuphela, msunywana omncanyana ngokuswela wona, mafula ngesibumbu ngokuswel’ ingobozi. Ndabezitha, Mageba, Zul’omnyama iindlela zimhlophe,Wabane!!!

Source: http://bhaca.co.za/kwabhaca-kingdom-umkhosi-wokukhahlela-womhlanga-2014/

What is Heritage

Siyabonga UGqobozimbawula Ngcai 2a MaXhosa by Laduma Xhosa Heritage What is HeritageI see people especially youngsters fail to understand the meaning of heritage. Let us define and examine it with a simple language from Oxford dictionary of current English; “it is property that is or may be inherited; an inheritance”. Meaning our heritage is what has been passed to us by our antecedents. It is what is passed from one generation to another. Heritage can also be defined as legacy. So if we celebrate heritage we therefore celebrate life of our ancestors. Life given to us by them.

Our ancestors were then Traditional Spiritualists who embraced tradition, culture and values and practiced customs and rituals. So if you distanced yourself from that and or against it, then we shouldn’t be celebrating our African heritage with you because you have rejected what you were supposed to inherit. African heritage is not only about cultures but about traditional beliefs as well, and there is traditional philosophy behind everything in tradition. Our ancestors were organic intellectuals and philosophers. So there was spiritual philosophy behind everything, from language to clothing, from spirituality to customs and rituals, from land to chiefdom, from education to arts, from science to medicine, fromm names to surnames and clan names, and so forth. Everything was referred to as the gift from the ancestors and uNkulunkulu the Great Spirit, hence heritage.

Lonto ithi ukuba wena uzosinxibela imibhaco okanye naluphi na uhlobo lwesihombo sakwantu, ube ungakholwa kwinkolo kaNtu, emva koko uthi you are celebrating your heritage, chith’utyiwe ukhe phantsi isitya sizele.

And if you converted from INkolo kaNtu to any other religion including Judaism, Christianity, Baha’i, Hinduism, Taoism, Buddhism, Sikhism or whatever, we are not going to celebrate our African heritage with you. Because those religions are not part of our heritage, and Christianity was forced through physical and psychological slavery to devastate our cultures and beliefs “Heritage”, and we are not celebrating slavery here, remember. Our ancestors were brutally murdered because they refused to go to church; they refused to give land and cattle for the bible, but anyway, the mission of demolishing African cultures and stealing land was a success. So it’s a must to agree that our heritage was stolen, and part of it relegated to a dustbin by Europeans and Mental Enslaved Africans.

Siyabonga UGqobozimbawula Ngcai 4 e1412802881337 What is HeritageAfrican Traditional Spirituality plays an enormous role in African heritage. It is a religion of Black African people if I may put it that way. That means “we do not separate our colour from our religion. The white man doesn’t. The white man never has separated Christianity from white, nor has he separated white man from Christianity. When you hear the white man bragging; “I’m a Christian” he is bragging about being a white man. Then you have the negro/black man. When he is bragging about being a Christian, he is bragging about being a white man or he wants to be white, and usually those negroes who brag like that, I think you have to agree, in their songs and things they sing in church, they show they have a greater desire to be white than anything else” (Malcom X, Black Man’s History speech).

Let us talk about clan names and why we should not consider celebrating our heritage with you if you don’t believe in ancestors. Let us first deal with the significance behind clan names. It is to thank, praise and worship, that’s ancestral worship. Remember your clan names are your ancestor’s names. For an example: Bhala, Mchenge, Sukude, Madiba, Maduna, Khwetshube, Bhele, Cirha, Dlamini, you name them, those are the ancestors, your roots and heritage. That is why “I think” white people do not have clan names because they don’t believe in dead people as they claim. So if you also on that page, of not believing in ancestors, then you might as well not praise them, because you can’t claim to be Mchenge but you do not believe in Mchenge himself. Hayi kaloku ayihambi kanjalo, umvuma umphika uMchenge ngoku. Ngumvubo wamanqina kaloku lowo.Yibacalanye ubeyimpuku okanye ubeyintaka.

Ancestral Worship/African Traditional Spirituality/ Inkolo KaNtu and Christianity cannot go together, that is against our African Heritage. As you cannot take both Christianity and Buddhism. Ngukhomba-khomba nonondwayiza kaloku abo. Ifane ke neNkolo Kantu neChristianity, azidibani. African spirituality and Jews and/or Greeks religion are like a snake and the frog. It is water and paraffin. Let us clear that confusion and eradicate it to pigs and dogs. I see a lot of folks mix the two, they posses confusion. For example a white man has nothing to do with ancestors, reason being, he is a Christian. That is why they insulted and referred to ancestors as demons because they don’t believe in them, and unfortunately slaves digested that. I don’t blame them, when you are enslaved sometimes you lose or lack common sense and cognizance and take whatever is said by the master as truth and light.

Continues…

Written By Siyabonga UGqoboz’imbawula Ngcai
(Mental Slavery and Mental Liberation).
Batshise Mbawula!

AmaXhosa AseRhawutini Heritage Reunion

AmaXhosa Heritage Reunion Mbafi Lodge Xhosa Culture 33 e1411851310213 AmaXhosa AseRhawutini Heritage Reunion

AmaXhosa AseRhawutini Heritage Reunion is an annual event organized by Mzoxolo Allistair Jola Mpike, Bonke Mlungwana, Thobela Biko and others. In previous years, the event is said to have been held successfully and this year’s event was also expected to be likewise… The aim of the event is to unite Xhosa speaking people who are based in Gauteng(AmaGcaleka, AmaRharhade, AbaThembu, AmaMpondo, AmaMpondomise, AmaBhaca, AmaXesibe, AmaGqunukhwebe, etc) and those interested in Xhosa Culture. It’s aim is to unite, educate them on the history and heritage of Xhosa people and entertain them with some of the country’s best musicians, poets and other artists. According to the organisers, this year’s lineup was scheduled to be hosted by Luyanda Potwana of SABC 1’s Nyan Nyan, and acts such as Jessica Mbangeni, 6 Mabone, Simbone Inyange, Nqontsonqa, Athi, Eastern Boys, Traditional Dancers and more. The venue being Mbafi Lodge in Midrand.

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Came the day of the event, Xhosa speaking people came from all corners of the Gauteng province, some from as far as Rustenburg in North West Province. The entrance at the venue was R60.00 and for a cooler box, an additional R50.00. The event was scheduled to start at 12pm midday, and by 14H00, it was still very far from being ready to begin… People came dressed in the wonderful Xhosa Traditional Dresses (Imibhaco), and very colourful Xhosa beads to witness this day of Cultural & Heritage Celebrations, only to be disappointed by very poor organizational skills from the “organizers”. By around 16H00 people were losing their patience with the main event co-ordinator, Mzoxolo “Jola” Mpike, no artist had arrived, the sound system was still not working, and fortunately for the organizers, guests decided to get the event going, through Xhosa Traditional Songs & dances (kusombelwa, kuxhentswa). Shortly after 17H00, Jessica Mbangeni, the revered Xhosa poetess arrived ready to do what she is popularly known for, entertain with insightful Xhosa Poetry from her latest album, IGOLI, but unfortunately, the sound system was still not ready for her to perform. By this time, most people were starting to lose their patience as Jola was making excuses so as to why the sound system was still not ready, and non-alcoholic drinks not available. Some left while some were demanding their money back, though it’s unlikely they got it.

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By 19H00 it was dark, lights were not working and it was not easy getting ahold of Jola. What promised to be one of the most amazing events in the Xhosa calender turned out to be a total waste of time and money for most people, as none of what had been promised actually happened. Many people who came from far away places in Gauteng and other provinces felt very betrayed and cheated by the organisers who never even gave a proper explanation regarding this dismal event which was supposed to end in high spirits and a renewed sense of Xhosa Cultural Identity for those who took time to attend it… The sound system was only sorted after 20H00, by then most people had left. Jessica Mbangeni performed for those who had remained and then after it became a party until it was stopped by the police in the early hours of the morning…XhosaCulture

Kumahla Ndinyuka [Trials & Tribulations]

Kumahla ndinyuka omhlaba,

ndidla ngolumka ndifane naye u-Raymond Mhlaba,

ndilandele yona indlela,

kanye njengaye no-Nelson Mandela,

ndithi ezindzulwini zobusuku,

ndime njengaye utata u-Walter Sisulu,

andisathethi ngayo ingqondo yemveli,

iqhawe lomzabalazo utata u-Govan Mbeki,

ufane wazibuza ukuthi ndingubani,

ekugqibeleni sakubakunye naye no-Hani,

andisayikubanjwa nayimilambo,

ndohlala ndili-Comrade lika-Oliver Tambo!

Translation of this praise poem – an ode to the stalwarts and freedom fighters of the liberation movement, which is originally written in my ethnic South African language – isiXhosa:

Through the trials and tribulations of this world,

Jus’ like Raymond Mhlaba I partake wisdom from His Word;

Directed on the path I shall walk,

As part ‘n parcel of Nelson Mandela’s stalk;

In the midst of the night I shall stand tall,

In the image of Walter Sisulu ‘n all;

I speak not of instinctive intelligence,

As in freedom fighters of Govan Mbeki’s caliber, at a glance!

You may have asked yourself who I am?

We shall be reunited with Hani in the end,

Not even the most perilous of rivers can stop me,

For a comrade of Oliver Tambo I’ll forever be!

 

© Gcinuxolo ‘Gcina’ Yawathe. 2010

Marikana (by Xolile Mgijima)

Mgcineni ‘Mambush’ Noki Marikana Massacre e1408618772109 Marikana (by Xolile Mgijima)Mzi wakowethu, Sizwe sasekhaya

Ma-Afrik’amahle, Sizwendin’esintsundu

Kwakhona lelo xesha leenkumbulo

Sikhumbul’ukuwa kwabantwana bomgquba

Sikhumbul’ukuwa kwabantakwethu

Sikhumbul’ukuwa kwemidak’emnyama

Sikhumbul’umbon’ombi wokugraywa kwamadod’elizwe

Isankenteza nangoku loo ngxokolo naloo ngxolo yevolovolo

“dudu—dududu—dudududu” Lahlanz’iselwa waqhawuk’unobathana kwabaninzi

Sikhumbula loo mini bantwana basekhaya

Marikana, Marikana, kanti kwenzeka ntoni?

Owu! Owu! Marikana

Yenzek’intlekele madoda

Zatyakatywa zagraywa iintsika zemizi

Aw’amadoda kwashek’abahlolokazi

Zashek’iintsana ziinyembezana ngokuwa kooyise

Sivakel’isanxwe sesikhalo ndawo zonke

Yasik’inimba koonozala xa bebon’umhlola

Xa bebukel’ishwangusha lokutyakatywa koonyana

Sikhumbula loo mine yeshwangusha kumhlaba weAfrika

Marikana, Marikana, kanti kwenzeka ntoni?

Kanti kwenzeka ntoni kule Marikana

Kanti yaqala phi na lempi?

Ndiyabuza mz’omhle ndicel’impendulo

Omny’ukhomb’omny’esweni, omny’uvikel’elakhe

Yhini na madoda sesaphelelwa zizazela na?

Siphi n’isazela sakho Afrika?

Asisayoyiki n’ingqumbo yeminyanya xa sitshila kanje?

Marikana, Marikana, kanti kwenzeka ntoni

Kodwa noko kunjalo sizw’esimnyama

Thulani zihlobo ningakhali

Thulani bahlobo ningasoli

Sulan’ezonyembezi maAfrik’amahle

Bayekeni bagqum’umbona ngamakhasi,

Kodwa won’umoya uzakufika uvunduze

Kuba kaloku akukho nany’efihlakala kuphele

Azakuniphendulel’amanyang’esizw’esintsundu

Uzakuniphendulelal’uMdali wen’uQamata

Marikana, Marikana, kuzobuya kulunge

(By Xolile Mgijima)

UDULI

Uduli Xhosa marriage wedding UDULI Uduli – Ukwenda kwentombi ligugu, ibhongo neqhayiya kwaNtu.Kuba luvuyo nemincili kwikhaya lakulo ntombi kanti nakwi khaya lakulo myeni,kaloku ngoku ziyafezekiseka iziyalo awayeziyalwe mhla ngejaka.Ukhumbule kaloku mlesi amaXhosa athi ingcwaba lentombi lisemzini.
Intombi elotyolweyo ayiziyeli emzini iyasiwa ngabantu bakowayi kanti nokuba ithe yagongxiswa ingasiwanga iphinda indlela ibuyele kowayo asakube amakhaya ethethile axoxa ngayo. Xa isisiwa emzini kuyabotshwa, iqokelelelwa izipho ezakufika izisebenzise emzini ukuze ingasokoli.Kwezo zipho ke ithi ihambe nazo xa isiya emzini kuquka iinkomo ezintathu:Inkomo yenqakwe le yinkomo elithokazi nesisipho sikamazala esivela kulontombi,Eyesibini yinkomo yobulunga, yona yimazi yenkomo enethole elibango lomtshakazi nayinikwa likhaya lakhe ukuze asenge angalambi yena nabantwana. Inkomo yempothulo,yinkabi yenkomo eqinileyo nengumnikelo wekhay
a nefika ixhelwe ze kuthathwe inyongo yayo idityaniswa naleyo yaleyo ibixhelwe ngabakulo myeni , ziphalazwe emthonyameni ukumanya eso sibini.Sinenkolo ethi nesosibini akukho mntu onakusahlula sakufana nezonyongo zenkome kulomthonyama……Makhe nditshaye!!!

Nelson Mandela Timeline – Little Known Facts You May Not Know About Dalibhunga

Nelson Rholihlahla Mandela Former President of South Africa e1405764708874 Nelson Mandela Timeline – Little Known Facts You May Not Know About DalibhungaRevolutionary hero and anti-apartheid icon, Nelson Mandela is among the most famous and well-respected political activists of all time, and after serving 27 years in prison, he became South Africa’s first democratically elected Black president in 1994.

From his earliest days as a descendant of South African royalty, the Thembu Kingdom to his activism against racism and apartheid in South Africa, Mandela and his heroism has literally created history for more than 75 years. But even international icons such as Mandela have little-known facts in their backgrounds.

Few lives have been thoroughly chronicled as that of  former South African President Nelson Mandela, who passed away on 5 December 2013 at the age of 95.

Below is a Nelson Mandela timeline outlining some of the key events in his life.

Parents: Father: Gadla Henry Mphakanyiswa, Mother: Nonqaphi Nosekeni Fanny. Mandela’s father, Gadla Henry Mphakanyiswa, was a local chief in the Transkei region and had four wives,  four sons and nine daughters, who lived in different villages. Nelson’s mother was Gadla’s third wife, Nosekeni Fanny, who was daughter of Nkedama of the Right Hand House and a member of the amaMpemvu clan of Xhosa.

Nelson Rholihlahla Dalibhunga Mandela, the son of Chief Mphakanyiswa (Gadla) kaMandela kaNgubengcuka kaNdaba kaZondwa kaTato kaMadiba kaHala kaDlomo kaNxeko ka(Mboti?) kaNtande kaToyi kaCeduma (Cedwini) kaDunakazi kaBhomoyi kaThembu kaNtongakazi kaMalandela kaNjanya kaMbulali kaZwide…!

Clan Names (Iziduko): Dlomo, Madiba, Yem-Yem, Vela bambhentsele, Sophitsho, Ngqolomsila, Tubhana, Qhumpase, Ntande, MThembu, Ncikoza, Mtshikilana, Malangana, Bhomoyi! MThembu obhuzu-bhuzu. UNontsedwane, ooMaqath’alukhuni, ongengomXhosa, onguMThembu, kodwa ethethisiXhosa.

Date of Birth – July 18, 1918: Rolihlahla Dalibhunga Mandela is born in Transkei, in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. A member of the Madiba clan. Nelson Mandela was born into the royal Thembu family. His tribal name, “Rholihlahla,” means “troublemaker.” He is later given his English name, Nelson, by a teacher at his school. Mandela was baptized a Methodist. By the time of Rholihlahla’s birth in 1918:

  • Most of Black South Africans’ land had been legally stolen for 5 years through the Native Land Act of 1913.
  • The ANC was 6 years old, having been started in 1912 as a result of the Land Act that was about to be legalised, and many other injustices to African people. Born in the mind of Pixley ka Isaka Seme having realised that all Black Africans had a common enemy, the white European settlers and that all African had to come together, united against this enemy and put aside their tribal differences.
  • The Union of South Africa was 8 years old (A union of Afrikaaners & British settlers that had fought in the Anglo-Boer War of 1899 – 1902), uniting for the control of the Economy of South Africa and oppression of the indigenous people, led by Louis Botha then General Jan Smuts.
  • It had been 24 years since Pondoland, one of the last native lands to fall under British control, in 1894.
  • It had been 34 years since the passing of King Ngangelizwe in 1884, the grand-father of Thembu Chief Jongintaba Dalindyebo, who later became Rholihlahla’s guardian, after the passing away of Chief Mpakanyiswa
  • The Xhosa people had lost their independence for 40 years (having lost their independence in 1878/9 to British settlers, after the last “Frontier War”)
  • It had been 62 years since the unfortunate incident of Nongqawuse & Cattle Killings of 1856 which led to Black people having to seek employment from the white European settlers for the first time in their lives to survive. A pattern that still continues to this day.  Before then, most Black people were self-employed, they had vast amounts of land to plough and feed their families, and had vast food reserves, should there be a drought or any other natural disaster.
  • It had been 83 years since the beginning of a systematic conquest of AbaThembu (Tembus), AmaMpondo (Pondos), AmaBhaca, AmaMfengu (Fingoes) and Xhosa communities in what came to be known as the Transkei and Ciskei by British commander Harry Smith and the eventual killing of King Hintsa ka Khawuta.
  • The Zulu Kingdom was 102 years old, as it was started by Shaka kaSenzangakhona kaJama kaNdaba in 1816.
  • It had been 139 years since the beginning of “Fronteir Wars” or Wars of Resistance to white settlers invading the land of the Southern Nguni people…

1919: His father is dispossessed of his land and money on the orders of a white magistrate after his refusal to obey an 1927: Nelson Mandela was 9-years-old when his father died of a lung disease.  The acting chief of the Thembu clan, Jongintaba Dalindyebo becomes his guardian and ensures he receives an excellent education 1934: Mandela went through the ancient Xhosa Tradition of initiation at the age of 16, a tradition that marks the transition from being a boy to manhood. He was then given his  name, DalibhungaDalibhunga means founder of the council, or convener of the dialogue. Convening a space for dialogue for purposes of turning adversaries into allies is one of Dalibhunga’s greatest achievements.

earliest known photo of nelson mandela at healdtown 1937 to 1938 photo by Ardon Bar Hama e1405765218949 Nelson Mandela Timeline – Little Known Facts You May Not Know About Dalibhunga

Earliest known-photo of Nelson Mandela at Healdtown College 1937-1938 photo by Ardon Bar/Hama

1937: Moves to Healdtown attending the Wesleyan college in Fort Beaufort. 1939: Nelson Mandela enrolls in University College of Fort Hare. Studied for a B.A. and met his lifelong friend Oliver Tambo. 1940: Nelson Mandela expelled from Fort Hare due to his involvement in a boycott of the Students’ Representative Council against the university policies. Moves to Johannesburg to escape an arranged marriage and experiences the system of apartheid which forbade the black population to vote, travel without permission or own land. Worked as a guard at a mine and then clerk at a law firm. 1942: Nelson Mandela earns a bachelor’s degree via correspondence through the University of South Africa 1943: Nelson Mandela begins studying for law degree at University of Witwatersrand whilst living in Alexandra. Joins the African National Congress (ANC) as an activist 1944: Forms the Youth League of the ANC with Ashley Peter Mda, Oliver TamboWalter Sisulu with Anton Lembede as the first President. Marries his first wife Evelyn Ntoko Mase. 1945: Nelson Mandela and Evelyn Mase celebrate the birth of their first childThembekile. The couple had three children but the marriage breaks up in 1957 as his political activism was intensifying. 1948: South African government (Afrikaner-dominated National Party) limits the freedom of black Africans even more when the apartheid policy of racial segregation is introduced across the country, after the National Party won the elections & DF Malan becoming President of the country.

1951: Nelson Mandela elected president of the African National Congress Youth League, which he’d co-founded in 1944.

1952: Nelson Mandela convicted of violating the Suppression of Communism Act and sentenced to nine months in prison; founded the first black law firm in South Africa’s history with fellow lawyer Oliver Tambo providing free or low-cost legal counsel to many blacks who would otherwise have been without legal representation.  Mandela was prominent in the ANC’s 1952 Defiance Campaign.

1955: Freedom Charter adopted at the Congress of the People, in Kliptown, Soweto calling for equal rights and a program of the anti-apartheid cause.

December 5, 1956: Accused of conspiring to overthrow the South African state by violent means with 155 other political activists and charged with high treason. The Treason Trial of 1956–61 follows and all were acquitted.

1957: His marriage of 13 years to his first wife Evelyn Ntoko Mase breaks up due to his increased political activism.

1958: Divorces Evelyn Ntoko Mase and marries Nomzamo “Winnie” Madikizela, a social worker, and the couple have two daughters. Their marriage ended in separation in April 1992 and divorce in March 1996.

1959: Parliament passes new laws extending racial segregation by creating separate homelands for  major black groups in South Africa. The ANC loses most of its financial and militant support when members break away to form the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) under Robert Sobukwe and Potlako Leballo.

1960: Sharpeville Massacre: Police kill 69 peaceful protestors and the ANC is banned. Mandela goes into hiding and forms an underground military group with armed resistance. Though Mandela rejected violence, he co-founded the militant Umkhonto we Sizwe 1961: South Africa becomes a Republic on May 31 and Queen Elizabeth II is stripped of the title Queen of South Africa and Hendrik Frensch Verwoerd intensifies apartheid. Mandela issues a call to arms and becomes the ANC leader of the newly formed Umkhonto  we Sizwe a guerrilla movement at the All-In African Conference as its “Volunteer in Chief” in 1961. Its founding represented the conviction in the face of the massacre that the ANC could no longer limit itself to non-violent protest; MK launched its first guerrilla attacks against government installations on 16 December 1961 as a form of retaliation to the Apartheid government. August 5, 1962: Arrested after living on the run as the “Black Pimpernel” for seventeen months and was imprisoned in the Johannesburg Fort, where the Constitutional Court of South Africa now sits.

October 25:  Nelson Mandela was sentenced to five years in prison but again goes on the run.

October 1963: Charged with sabotaging the government.

June 12, 1964: Captured and convicted of sabotage and treason, Nelson Mandela is sentenced to life in prison at the age of 46, initially on Robben island where he would be kept for 18 years. Mandela was also held at Pollsmoor Prison and Victor Verster Prison during his 27 year sentence. Mandela’s eyesight was permanently damaged from sun glare while being forced to work in prison without sunglasses.

1965: Rhodesia gains its independence from the British and only whites are represented in the new government

1968: His mother dies and his eldest son, Thembi, is killed in a car crash but he is not allowed to attend either of the funerals.

1974: Rhodesia is expelled from the United Nations due to its policy of apartheid

1976: Over 600 students are killed in protests in Soweto and Sharpeville. Steve Biko, who had stepped-in to fill the leadership vacuum left by the banning of the ANC, PAC & other parties, and the arrest of other leaders, including Mandela, played a big role during this time, inspiring the youth to stand up against oppression.

1977: Steve Biko, leader of the protest movement, is killed while in police custody

1980: The exiled Oliver Tambo launches an international campaign for the release of his friend. Zimbabwe gains its  independence & Robert Mugabe its President. President Ronald Reagan considered Mandela a communist terrorist and worked against the African National Congress.

1983: The government allows farmers to re-arm and protect themselves from black dissidents

1984: Government sources declared that since 1983, black dissidents have murdered 120, mutilated 25, raped 47 and committed 284 robberies

1985: Nelson Mandela turns down offer from South African President PW Botha to leave prison on condition that he ‘”unconditionally rejected violence as a political weapon”. Mandela spurned the offer, releasing a statement through his daughter Zindzi stating “What freedom am I being offered while the organisation of the people [ANC] remains banned? Only free men can negotiate. A prisoner cannot enter into contracts.” When Stevie Wonder dedicated to Mandela his 1985 Oscar Award for the song “I Just Called to Say I Love You,” Wonder’s music was banned by the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).

1986:  Sanctions against South Africa tightened costing millions in revenue Dec. 7, 1988: Nelson Mandela moved from Pollsmoor Prison to Victor Verster Prison, where he’s held in a cottage for 14 months

1988: Amnesty is announced for all dissidents – 122 surrender.

Feb. 2, 1990: South African government lifts ban on ANC

Feb. 11, 1990: President De Klerk lifts the ban on the African National Congress (ANC). Nelson Mandela released after 27 years in prison. The ANC and the white National Party begin talks on forming a multi-racial democracy for South Africa. In the days following his release from prison in 1990, Mandela stayed at the home of Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

1991: Nelson Mandela becomes President of the African National Congress (ANC). The International Olympics Committee lift a 21 year ban on South African athletes competing in the Olympic Games. Mandela appeared in the 1992 film “Malcolm X.” Tours USA. April 1992: Separates from Winnie Mandela after she is convicted of kidnapping and being an accessory to assault

Dec. 10, 1993: Nelson Mandela and Mr. de Klerk are awarded the Nobel Peace Prize

April 26, 1994: Free Elections where black South Africans are allowed to vote for the first time. Nelson Mandela runs for President. The ANC won 252 of the 400 seats in the national assembly

May 9, 1994: Nelson Mandela becomes South Africa’s first democratically elected black president. He appoints de Klerk as deputy president and forms a racially mixed Government of National Unity.

Watch Nelson Mandela’s 1994 Inaugural Address Below:

1995: South Africa hosts the 1995 Rugby World Cup and South Africa wins. Nelson Mandela wears a Springbok shirt when he presents the trophy to Afrikaner captain Francois Pienaar. This gesture was seen as a major step in the reconciliation of white and black South Africans

July 6, 1995: Nelson Mandela receives Honorary Doctorate from Seoul National University

March 1996: Nelson Mandela divorces Winnie Mandela

July 18, 1998: On his 80th birthday, Nelson Mandela marries Graca Machel, his third wife and the widow of the former president of Mozambique, and ally on South Africa’s freedom struggle, Samora Michel, who had died 12 years earlier.

1999: Nelson Mandela steps down as South Africa’s president after one term in office in favor of Thabo Mbeki, who was nominated ANC president in 1997. Tours the world as a global statesman

2000: Appointed as mediator in the civil war in Burundi

2001: Nelson Mandela is diagnosed and treated for prostate cancer with radiation. Prior to his death, he was the only living person to be made an honorary Canadian citizen.

2003: Attacked the foreign policy of U.S. President George W. Bush. Later that same year, he lent his support to the 46664 AIDS fundraising campaign. The initiative was named after his prison number

June 1, 2004: Nelson Mandela officially announces that he would be retiring from public life at the age of 85.

July: Flew to Bangkok to speak at the XV International AIDS Conference.

July 23: Johannesburg bestowed its highest honor by granting Nelson Mandela the freedom of the city

January 6, 2005: His son, Makgatho Mandela died of AIDS

July 11, 2010: Nelson Mandela appears at the World Cup in Soweto

July 18, 2012: Nelson Mandela marks his 94th birthday in Qunu, Eastern Cape

June 8, 2013: Nelson Mandela hospitalized with a lung infection, said to be in “very serious” condition.

December 5, 2013: South African President Jacob Zuma announces that former President of South Africa and freedom fighter Nelson Mandela had left the world a dimmer place with his passing.

Watch A Short Bio On Nelson Mandela’s Life Below:

Currently: Most black South Africans think that they are really true “FREE”, since most of the segregative & restrictive laws of the Apartheid regime are no more. They think that the STRUGGLE is over… This thought usually comes as a result of not having a proper background to the STRUGGLE and the role that Nelson Mandela played in it. Well, the struggle is far from over. To this day, more than 80% of South Africa’s land is still in white European settlers’ hands & control, not all of them though, but a few males who own a vast majority of South Africa’s rich land. The economy of the country is still in the hands of white monopoly capital, while the majority of black South Africans are still poor, and those are employed don’t realise that they are just a pay-check or two away from poverty. Principles that Africans people valued and used, such a Food reserves, are today nothing but just something in history. During the days of real independence of African people, actually, until recently, there would be enough maize & sorghum stored in reservoirs to last at-least a year. Whereas today the whole nation is at the mercy of big retailers, who control the food industry.

The struggle begun in 1652, when the first European settlers came into South Africa. This STRUGGLE has been fought by some of the bravest sons & daughters Africa has ever seen. King Hintsa of the Xhosa died in battle in 1835 fighting in this STRUGGLE. King Sekhukhune of the Pedi people fought bravely against colonisation & daily light robbery of the African land. King Cetshwayo of the Zulu Kingdom fought like a lion that he truely was, ISILO! and gave the British a scarce they’ll never forget when his warrior defeated the British soldiers in the battle of Isandlwana in 1879. Unfortunately the victory was short lived, as the British came back with more force and crushed the mighty Zulu Empire at the Battle of Ulundi the very same year. This event is so important because it officially signalled the beginning of the darkest period in the history of African people in the south of the continent. The Honourable Chief Nelson Mandela took the STRUGGLE baton from these warriors and did his very best with his comrades. They indeed did finally achieve victory in the battle of Apartheid, but the war is not yet won. The land is still in the hands of the minority of the land, and the majority, which is Black people are still living is squalor. It was because of this very reason that Mandela, Govan Mbeki, Walter Sisulu, Oliver Tambo all agreed to pass on the baton, and that “It in your hands”.