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Dec 6, 2013

National Coalition Statement on the Passing of Nelson Mandela

Washington, DC - Melanie L. Campbell, president and CEO of the National Coalition on Black Civic and convener of Black Women's Roundtable, today issued the following statement regarding the passing of Nelson Mandela:

"Tonight, we join the world in morning and celebrating the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela. We send our deepest condolences to the Mandela family and the people of South Africa. We thank you for sharing Mandela with the world family.

"Mandela sacrificed his freedom by serving over 27 years in prison to free the people of South Africa from the oppressive bondage of Apartheid. He personified the power of non-violent peaceful protest and forgiveness when he walked out of prison in 1990, unified South African people of all races and classes to embrace peaceful reconciliation and was ultimately elected the first president of a free South Africa in 1994.

"Nelson Mandela lived a life of hope, faith and unconditional love as a servant leader of the people of South Africa. He transformed generations around the world to understand the power of sacrifice and inspired generations for decades to commit their lives to fight for democracy, equal opportunity and justice for all human kind.

"Mandela influenced my life personally when I was a student activist at Clark College in the Atlanta University Center where I first learned about The Anti-Apartheid Divestment Movement in the 1980s. I can remember the many protests when we would engage in chanting “Free Mandela!, Free Mandela!”

"Little did I know that I would have the honor to meet Nelson and Winnie Mandela in 1990 at The King Center for Non-Violent Social Change. Further, I was blessed to work with the Late Reverend James Orange and others on logistics for the Public Rally at Georgia Tech Stadium where Mandela addressed over 50,000 people of all races, class and culture joined together in unity in a collective admiration and shear awe of Mandela’s presence.

"Mandela has joined our ancestors having lived a purpose-driven life well lived.

"Rest in Peace Madiba."

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