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  • Winnie Madikizela Mandela of South Africa  has died at the age of  81. She died around 12 noon today in a  hospital at Johannesburg South Africa . This was made  known by  her personal assistant,  Zodwa Zwane. According to Zodwa, Winnie died in a Johannesburg hospital after a long illness.
  • Family spokesman Victor Dlami told BBC news that Mrs Mandela died peacefully in the early hours of Monday afternoon surrounded by family and loved ones after the illness that made her a frequent visitor to the hospital since January.
  • The South African activist and politician had held several government positions and headed the African National Congress Women’s League. She was a member of the ANC’s National Executive Committee. She was one of the greatest icon for the struggle against apartheid.  
  • She was married to Nelson Mandela for 38 years, including 27 years during which he was imprisoned. Although they were still married at the time of his becoming president of South Africa in May 1994, the couple had separated two years earlier. Their divorce was finalised on 19 March 1996, though Winnie Mandela continued to be a presence in Mandela’s life (Also Known as F Buddies) in later years despite his remarriage in 1998.
  • Winnie  Mandela,  was known as the mother of the  nation  in the whole of South Africa.  She stood by her former husband late  Nelson Mandela throughout his years in prison custody.. Unfortunately,  her marriage with Nelson  crashed soon  after  he came out from prison custody.
  • Winnie’s former husband,late Nelson  Mandela was regarded as the father of apartheid in South Africa. Nelson was imprisoned for 27years during which period  Winnie canvassed relentlessly for his release and the freedom of South Africa .
  • She was arrested and detained severally during her struggle for freedom of  South Africa . She was at the centre of controversy after she was heard endorsing the brutal act of  “Neckacing” – the act of  putting burning tyre around the neck of suspected criminals.
  • In 1991 , she was convicted of kidnapping and being a help to assault for her involvement in the death of a teenage activist  Stomp Moeketsi who was kidnapped with three other boys by winnie’s bodyguard in 1988 and his body was found in January 1989. Winnie continued to deny these while her bodyguard Jerry Musivizi Richardson claimed that she ordered the  kidnapp and murder . Her six year prison term was later reduced to a  fine and two years suspended sentence on appeal.
  • May her soul rest in peace.

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