As all of you all know the former South African President, Nelson Mandela has passed away at age 95. Mandela spent 27 years in prison and went on to become the first black President of South Africa. Upon his release Mandela broke the chains of apartheid which was a system of racial segregation that was enforced through legislation. These are all things we know about Pres. Mandela, but here are 5 facts you probably didn’t know about this great man.
1. Nelson often went out in disguise.
After his verdict trial he started going out secretly around South Africa in order to gain supposed for his organization, The African National Congress. This gave him the nickname “The Black Pimpernel” among government troops.
2. Mandela is a natural born troublemaker.
His forename is “Rolihlahla” which roughly translates to troublemaker.
3. Mandela was not only a President, but royalty as well. His great grandfather on his father’s side was the king of the Thembu people from what is now the Eastern Cape Province.
4. Nelson Mandela: Style Icon
Mr. Mandela was a very sharp dresser and once he became President he had several outfit changes a day, and made Madiba shirts popular. A type of shirt designed by his personal designer Yusuf Surtee.
5. Nelson Mandela suffered permanent eye damage due to the sun while in the prison yard of Rodden Island, were he slept on a straw mat in a damp room and was forced to break rocks into smaller pieces if rock. He spent the first 18 years of his sentence on this Island in solitary confinement.
This great and courageous man will be missed, but his actions and efforts will live on for generations in South Africans.