The Promota Magazine

Mandela Forever: Timeline Of His Life!

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“Death is something inevitable. When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace. I believe I have made that effort and that is, therefore, why I will sleep for the eternity”.

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  1. July 18, 1918: Born Rolihlahla Mandela in a small village in the eastern Cape of South Africa.
  2. 1944: Joins the African National Congress (ANC).
  3. 1948:  South African government introduces the racial segregation policy of apartheid.
  4. December 1952:  Sentenced to nine months hard labour, suspended for two years, for civil disobedience campaign. Opens first black law firm with Oliver Tambo.
  5. 1956:  Charged with high treason as part of a round-up of 156 activists.
  6. 1958:  Divorces Evelyn Mase and marries social worker Winnie Madikizela.
  7. March 21, 1960: Sixty-nine black protesters killed during a demonstration at Sharpeville, in the Transvaal, provoking national uproar.
  8. April 8, 1960: Government bans the ANC.
  9. March 29, 1961: Mr Mandela acquitted of treason at the culmination of four-year trial. He goes underground on the same day and is dubbed “The Black Pimpernel” by the media for his ability to evade the police.
  10. April 1, 1961: Robben Island turns into a prison for political prisoners.
  11. January 11, 1962: Using the name David Motsamayi, he leaves country and travels around Africa and to England to gain support for the “struggle”.
  12. July, 1962: Returns to South Africa.
  13. August 5, 1962: He is arrested for leaving the country without a passport and inciting workers to strike.
  14. November 7, 1962: Mr Mandela is convicted and jailed for five years.
  15. July, 1963: Police raid ANC secret hideout in Rivonia.
  16. October, 1963: Joins 10 other activists on trial for sabotage in what becomes known as the Rivonia Trial.
  17. April 20, 1964: Gives his famous Speech From The Dock during which he declares he is prepared to die for equality.
  18. June 11, 1964: He is convicted, jailed for life with seven others and sent to Robben Island.
  19. 1969: Winnie Mandela is detained in solitary confinement at Pretoria Central Prison for 16 months under the Terrorism Act.
  20. June 16, 1976: Soweto uprising protests – as many as 20,000 students demonstrate against the introduction of Afrikaans in the schoolroom. Up to 700 people are said to have died.
  21. September 12, 1977: Anti-apartheid campaigner Steve Biko dies naked in Pretoria Central Prison after being tortured in police custody.
  22. 1980: Oliver Tambo, the president of the ANC, launches international campaign to release Mr Mandela.
  23. 10 February, 1985: Refuses President PW Botha’s offer to release him if he renounces violence.
  24. 1985: Fellow Rivonia trialist Denis Goldberg is released from prison.
  25. July 20, 1985: After protests against apartheid increase, President Botha declares a state of emergency in 36 districts.
  26. October, 1985: British PM Margaret Thatcher agrees to impose limited Commonwealth trade sanctions on South Africa.
  27. September 20, 1989: FW de Klerk replaces Mr Botha as president and in his first speech vows to end racism in South Africa.
  28. December 13, 1989: Mr de Klerk meets Mr Mandela for the first time to discuss the future of South Africa.
  29. February 2, 1990: Mr de Klerk lifts the ban on the ANC.
  30. February 11, 1990: After 27 years in prison, Nelson Mandela walks free from Victor Verster Prison.
  31. 1991: Mr Mandela becomes president of the ANC.
  32. December 10, 1993: He and Mr de Klerk win the Nobel Peace Prize.
  33. May 10, 1994: Mr Mandela is sworn in as South Africa’s first democratically elected president as the head of the Government of National Unity.
  34. 1996: Divorces Winnie Mandela.
  35. 1998:  Marries Graca Machel – former first lady of Mozambique.
  36. June 1999:  Steps down as president and Thabo Mbeki takes over after ANC wins elections.
  37. July, 2001: Mr Mandela is diagnosed with prostate cancer and undergoes treatment.
  38. June 1, 2004: Announces retirement from public life.
  39. January 6, 2005: Mr Mandela announces death of his son Makgatho from Aids.
  40. June 27, 2008: Hyde Park concert in honour of Mr Mandela’s 90th birthday.
  41. June 11, 2010: Great granddaughter Zenani is killed in a car crash.
  42. January 26, 2011: Mr Mandela is admitted to hospital in Johannesburg where he is treated for a chest infection for two days.
  43. June 21, 2011: Meets Michelle Obama at his home.
  44. February 25, 2012: Is admitted to hospital for one night with abdominal pains.
  45. December 8, 2012: Goes back to hospital – this time with a lung infection.
  46. December 15, 2012: He has an operation to remove gallstones.
  47. December 26, 2012: Mr Mandela is released from hospital but undergoes further treatment at home.
  48. March 9, 2013: He is admitted for a scheduled overnight hospital check-up.
  49. March 27, 2013: Returns to hospital with a recurrence of his lung infection. President Jacob Zuma asks the world to “pray”.
  50. April 6, 2013: Is discharged from hospital.
  51. June 8, 2013: Is admitted to hospital.
  52. December 5, 2013:  Mandela dies at age 95. South African President Jacob Zuma makes the announcement at a news conference, saying “we’ve lost our greatest son.”

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