Human Interest

Zindzi, Nelson Mandela’s daughter, dies aged 59

Johannesburg, Jul 13 (efe-epa).- Zindzi Mandela, the youngest daughter of South Africa’s anti-apartheid icons Nelson Mandela and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, has died aged 59, sources from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs told Efe on Monday.

The cause of Zindzi Mandela’s death remains unknown but the South African ambassador to Denmark passed away Monday morning in a hospital in Johannesburg, according to state-run television network SABC.

South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor had official confirmation of the news and sent a brief message of condolence, members of her team told Efe.

“Zindzi will not only be remembered as a daughter of our struggle heroes, Tata Nelson and Mama Winnie Mandela, but as a struggle heroine in her own right. She served South Africa well,” Pandor said in the statement.

“May her soul rest in peace,” she added.

Zindzi was Mandela’s sixth child and the youngest daughter of the two he had with his second wife Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.

She was born in 1960 in Soweto, the former black ghetto of south-west Johannesburg, and her life was marked by her father’s fight against racial oppression by the South African white minority regime.

Two years after her birth, her father was captured and sentenced to life in prison.

On 10 February 1985 Zindzi delivered the now iconic My Father Says speech when Mandela was offered a conditional release by then South African President Pieter Willem Botha.

Her father was unable to reply so Zindzi spoke on behalf of him to refuse the offer.

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