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Lenora Crichlow discovers the real Nelson Mandela

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Dana Stevens | 13:58 UK time, Tuesday, 8 June 2010

As the World Cup 2010 kicks off in South Africa this week, it's not just football that's under the spotlight. The country's troubled past means that the world will be watching to see how far the country has come since the end of apartheid in 1994.

Who is Nelson Mandela? (Lenora Crichlow) The man responsible for peace in South Africa is Nelson Mandela. Everyone knows the name but how much do you really know about the man behind the myth and the reality of what he was fighting for?

Being Human's Lenora Crichlow went on a personal journey to South Africa to discover just how important Mandela was and still is today. I asked her to tell us more about the experience....

Lenora, there's been quite a few documentaries about Nelson Mandela, what attracted you to take part in this particular film?

It's a very emotional, personal take on the whole Mandela and South Africa story rather than a factual Wikipedia page of his history. You should definitely get a factual sense of what happened but I'm not a journalist. I do think my attraction to it was that I'm interested in the people and the feel of South Africa rather than the facts and figures.

At the beginning of the film, we see that your own father was imprisoned for fighting for black rights in Britain and that Nelson Mandela was a significant figure in your childhood....

Absolutely and that's why it just sounded like an opportunity too good to be missed. Obviously because of my personal connection to Mandela and having had his story as part of my childhood I knew how awesome he was. it was one of those things that terrified me because the idea of doing anything as me, Lenora and not being able to hide behind a load of storylines and characters terrifies me. But it was a gut feeling that this could be something amazing. And it was.
The experience for me on a personal level was brilliant and I think one that I'll always remember. And I think it is such an honour to be asked to bring this story to different generations and to this country.
I thought I should say yes and ignore all my fears about doing it right and exposing myself. I just thought, you know what? It's not about you for once Lenora! (laughs)


Who is Nelson Mandela? (Lenora Crichlow) It definitely came across as a very moving journey for you; especially when you went to Robben Island to visit the cell that Mandela was imprisoned in. How did that feel?

Because I knew they did tours of the cell, I felt quite prepared for visiting the actual place. But what really threw me was that I didn't realise that my guide who took me round was actually a prisoner there. He doesn't take people to his own cell but he was sharing his experience with me and there's a story he told me about his father that he hasn't shared with everyone.
There were actually a few bits that I didn't realise that they were filming when we were speaking. So meeting him was a very profound experience for me and very emotional. Mandela is the name, but it really brought home how many people his story and struggle represents. It blew me away and that sort of set the tone for the rest of the documentary because he looked at me and said 'Take our story home with you'. It felt like a huge honour that he shared that with me.


Watch Lenora's visit to Robben Island...

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You didn't get a chance to speak to Mandela himself, as he doesn't give interviews these days, but you did meet his grandchildren. How important was that in getting a sense of him as a real, human person as opposed to a mythological figure?

There's nothing like meeting someone's family to get a true sense of them and a reflection of their ethics and personality. It just makes them a more rounded person. It was lovely to be able to meet them, and I think they bring a lot to the documentary in terms of compensating for not actually meeting him.

It wasn't all positive though, when you went to the site of the Sharpeville Massacre you were confronted by people who were obviously still very angry towards Mandela...

Yes for me it was very interesting and actually quite refreshing to hear. Because when we were filming in South Africa I was obviously witnessing huge poverty and a huge divide. You know, we didn't visit a white township. So as positive as everyone is, you do have to kind of think, OK but there's still glaring separation and lots of segregation. And there's still a long way to go and you can't ignore that.
So it was a really important side of the story to explore and represent. It's incredibly inspirational and they've come a long, long way from where they were but of course it's not that simple. South Africa is huge and the people and the history are complex. It's never going to be that simple to move on from something like apartheid.


And finally, what are you hoping that viewers will take away from this programme when they watch it?

I'd like people to take away a thirst for more, to explore this history. I was talking to a lady who's not that much older than me, who was voting for the first time in 1994. This history is not that far away from us and I think it's important for us younger generations to realise how recent this is. It's a hugely inspirational story of change. I hope that it interests people enough that they do their own digging and research and take what they will from it.

Lenora Crichlow presents Who is Nelson Mandela? which is on BBC Three tonight at 9pm.


Add your comment.

Dana Stevens is online content producer for BBC Three online.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Wow, This looks fantastic. I'll be watching.

  • Comment number 2.

    I watched your programme and once again another South African documentary that either talks to extreme white people or moderate black people, no wonder that people how the wrong idea of South Africans

  • Comment number 3.

    This was a great program, it also appealed to me since my dad struggled in the united states when he was studying in the 1960's. I am grateful u showed all sides and still pass on the greatest message of mandela, his strength in forgiving.

  • Comment number 4.

    Thank you Lenora Crichlow for visiting South Africa. I loved the programme it was fab lol. I really enjoyed it.

  • Comment number 5.

    This programme as similar ones do, bring back memories of when I was outside Nelson Manela's House in 1990 as a young girl in my twenties, just the day before he was released from Robin Island. I knew that it was Winnie's abode too. Although in a car, and, as a white girl, was not allowed outside the car, I saw an array of journalists and cameras waiting for the inevitable moment when he was released. I feel that as one of the first "whites" to go travel around Soweto (I had a cousin living there who employed a black chap from Soweteo that he could trust to take me around). This man Paul, who took me around, introduced me to his family in a very small house and I felt honoured that he could do this. It was an enormous experience and one that I am still very proud of today. Even thugh at the time, my cousin and his wife were very against me going. Now I hear they do tours around Soweto!!

  • Comment number 6.

    Lenora asks the questions that we would like to ask in a clear and directly way. There are always the back stories such as those revealed at the prison on Robin island which moved me to tears but the message was clear, well presented, balanced and informative. Well worth watching!

  • Comment number 7.

    a very lightweight programme by Lenora Crichlow, missed a golden chance to find out about the real South Africa

  • Comment number 8.

    I really enjoyed this show as Nelson Mandela is also a hero in my life. I thouht that what he did for the people of his country and race is unbelieveable and i would like to know more about him. He has inspired many people black and white to follow in what is right and he has gave soo many people freedom to life. I wish i could meet him and ask how he did it. He is a man who will be known through out history and i will always respect the name Nelson Mandela. He is a true hero.

  • Comment number 9.

    Having just returned from 4 weeks as a volunteer in a Port Elizabeth township School and a further week travelling to Cape Town, it was really interesting to watch and empathise with Leonora's roller-coaster journey. It was reassuring too to see that she came across the same attitudes towards the current apartheid regime. such a complex situation.

  • Comment number 10.

    Extremely narrow and selective portrayal about South Africa. The programme reveals more about Lenora's personal struggle with what her dad went through and her own search for identity than what South Africa really is like. The same applies for her portrayal of Nelson Mandela. Cannot believe the BBC used public money in the making of this.

  • Comment number 11.

    An excellent program.. many people know of Nelson Mandela.. but they dontfully understand what he sacrificed and achieved. Fortunately, I have never been exposed to the atrocities of apartheid rule, but as a young black man I certainly appreciate the many issues and challenges associated with being an ethnic minority and I have nothing but respect for such a great man..

    An excellent documentary..(and albeit somewhat arbitrary within the context, what a stunning presenter!)..excellent job Lenora!

    Kind Regards

  • Comment number 12.

    Watching Lenora'S expierence in South Africa I can only but sense the bias and non factual statements she made.
    The necklacing of black people was carried out by blacks on blacks and not as the journalist pointed out.

    She also failed to see the corruption by government officials who are at present lining their pockets and not enriching the people as they promised, this is not what the struggle was all about.

    Also spare a thought for all the innocent victims of the ANC's terrorist campain across South Africa.

    The comments by the Afrikaaner lady had some merit in pointing out the failures of the ANC government, Lenora did not see it that way because her mind is tainted with a dislike for white South Africans.

  • Comment number 13.

    wow, really good to see behinde the seens of what really goes on in south Afica, and also sad to see poor crime rates,

  • Comment number 14.

    Very interesting and emotional...i shed tears, its a pity she didnt get the chancr to see Tata, in person...well done Lenora!

  • Comment number 15.

    Hi Sisi (in xhosa )or Lenora

    First thank you for telling it like it is .I've been trying to explane this to my friends and people how ask me about South Africa . And you done it in an Hour thanks Sisi .About Mandela he is a special person in our country .And I agree with you when you say you see him in three diamension and that you see alot of Mandela in the South Africa people . Thanks again .

  • Comment number 16.

    Hi,
    Thank you so much for taking time to visit our beautiful country South Africa. Mandela is truly an iron man. The wife and I move to the UK in Jan and miss how so much. What really moved me when I watch this was the fact that there is so much that is needed and it take so little for people to help and not turn a blind eye. I feel if South Africa had half of opportunities that this country had, we would not have most of the crime. Let’s take free education for example, we pay school fees from primary school and that is besides paying for clothes, food, books, stationary, transportation and so much more just to attend one day of school. If we had free education, most of the youth would be in class and once the completed the secondary level they would have the mind set of looking to further studies. I guess most of the kids will not have a normal life which is so sad. Kids have to lose their youth to learn how to survive or risk dying. This goes without saying that stealing, robbing, fighting, killing, doing drugs, selling drugs and so many other things is what young kids have to resort to in order to live. It hurts that as a South African, I am in a better place and had and will always have opportunities in life but the true hero who deserved the live the life have lost their lives. Why can't humans just live, why do we have to hurt one another, why should one human been be better than another, don't we all breath air, drink water, eat food, have blood flowing through or veins, but NO, while we sleep in a first world country and have nice food, there are people fighting to survive as I type. I pray that once I am in a really good place financially that I will return and do some good for my country. Just a simple task of volunteering my services to make sandwiches and hand out for those in need, anything...if there is something in the UK that supports people is South Africa, I would love to know and volunteer my services. What Mandela did opened up so many path ways for all races. He did his part we had to do ours as well; we can't just sit back and expect him to make your situation better. He provided the opportunity and if you did nothing about it, it's not fair to shift blame back to him. Beside he did not ask anyone to share his 27 years in prison so why should we make it seem that he did 27 years in prison just to shake hand with a white man and hand over power. Take myself for example, if Mandela did not bring peace in our country, as an Indian South African I would not have been given opportunities but still I had to go out there and get it.

    In conclusion,
    God bless Mandela and all he stands for.

    Regards,

    Rajith

  • Comment number 17.

    I enjoyed this program and thought Lenora provided a good,down to earth
    insight into Mandela and how black South Africa sees his legacy. Having visited South Africa 3 times now and been captivated by this country,I was able to relate to much of the program, including my visit to Mandela's (museum) home in Rivonia,....where I believe he was also arrested(this was not mentioned)....the integration taking place between black and white was exposed,...but would have liked a more balanced perspective (more white input) and the one (Afrikaans) that was included appeared way off base, with talk of segregation for whites(!)...
    I hope we see more programs with Lenora,however.

  • Comment number 18.

    Lovely programme Lenora. Even though it didn't dig too deep into its subject it did show the good and the not-so-good about South Africa and Nelson Mandela, a man I greatly respect.
    I am an Afrikaner, and am not proud of the part we played in some of South Africa's darkest moments. Some things we did well, a lot of things we didn't. In addition to that, I can't identify at all with the Afrikaner woman you interviewed in the programme, who said that the only way for Afrikaners to make a living in South Africa would be to separate themselves from the rest of the country. I strongly believe that only in all ethnicities in South Africa working together and learning to understand each other can the country move forward and fulfil its potential to be great.
    My only criticism of your programme is that in spite of showing numerous black people who are for and against what Mandela has done / or not done and opinions about those who are optimistic and opinions about those who are pessimistic about South Africa's future, we only get to see the negative opinion and comments of one white woman, and not the other side as well (I know you interviewed the husband in the mixed race couple but he didn't add much to the content of your programme). Her comments does not represent the whole of the white population; there are so many whites who are optimistic about South Africa and what can be achieved. I do hope you had the chance to speak to some more white South Africans and didn't go away from there thinking that everyone wants a new form of apartheid like that.
    I'm living in the UK now, but neither my wife nor I can wait to return to South Africa soon (work commitments and studies keep us here), even though we don't look forward to the high levels of crime (which is unfortunately a reality). I hope you get the chance to make more programmes about South Africa in the future, as your enthusiasm for our beautiful country clearly shone through, and it looks like you might be falling in love with it.

  • Comment number 19.

    disappointed. self indulgence and naive.
    just more "gatekeeping" from the media.

  • Comment number 20.

    it was a good show yeah i loved it
    hope to see more i like horror show like this

  • Comment number 21.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 22.

    Great irony in the fact that this is a tribute to a GREAT MAN called Nelson Mandela and what he've achieved because he believes in equal human rights, yet Lenora seemed to very selectively choose to focus the programme on the pre-apartheid era rather than post-apartheid era which is also part of South Africa's history. Of course the post-apartheid era victims is not whites only, it is blacks and whites but Lenora instead chose to focus only on the black victims. Does equal rights not mean both blacks and whites deserve media recognition in order to promote equal rights, especially since part of her programme attempts to explain where South Africa (SA) came from, how it was transformed and where we are now in 2010 when SA will host the World Cup? I'm of the opinion that this program tonight was no true reflection of the actual situation in SA today, since there are much more to be said on black and white victims of the post apartheid era than what was portrayed tonight and I've left my sofa with a great pain in my heart knowing that these victims in SA are struggling in silence on their own without the British Public knowing it!

  • Comment number 23.

    The programme was about tatuMandela and his legacy .South Africa Whites should be greatful to have had Mandela cause things could have been different without forgiveness from all black people in SA .SA have only been free 16years .White S African ruled for 270years or so and oppresed any other race that was not Europian .

  • Comment number 24.

    just finished watching i really enjoyed the programe.

  • Comment number 25.

    thanks Lenora I am 59 and knew he was famous, but not why, great program, great man

  • Comment number 26.

    Chrisdk is free to write his own version of events in South Africa pre or post independence. Its not possible to script a whole country 's history in less than two hours. Yes Mandela did compromise for the sake of peace and good for that. The boers like most South African whites have never accepted none whites as equals they live in fear because their hands are tainted with black blood for the murders they committed. South Africa is a time bomb unless the rotten apples are rooted out. Multiculturalism is an option which can work as it is happening present day london UK. A typical none white South African speaks at least three languages but most white South Africans are happy to speak only one and mourn that Mandela failed them. Why didnt they stop the crimes whilst in power. Why didnt they mix with other races whilst in power instead of blaming Mandela. Now they embarrass us here in London toyi toying about crime in south africa!! eeish why choose this time and not before.

  • Comment number 27.

    Talk about propaganda, he was sent to prison for being a 'freedom fighter' as you put it? Was it not for all the carnage caused, innocent people injured or killed in those bomb blasts? He should have been given a life sentence or worse.
    It all seemed one sided to me, very poor standards for the BBC! I would only expect this type of reporting from tabloid papers.

  • Comment number 28.

    It was great to see an non egocentric doc by someone who we're 'supposed to' know (I don't know Lenora from TV so that makes it even nicer for me!) so the personality of the 'wanna be' presenter isn't obscenely splattered all over the program. I thought it was lovely and user friendly - but difficult to convey such a complex issue. The decision to use Lenora's informed yet naive views (representative of many of us :) ) really helped me to unpick some of the many complexities in South Africa. You were lovely Lenora and I think it's great when these documentaries involve a genuine challenging personal and spiritual journey for us to connect with. I'm really interested in the circumcision rite (I'm making a piece of theatre with men about masculinity, rites of passage for adolescent boys and the absence of positive masculine influence in our culture) Is there I way I can talk to you briefly about Nelson's nephew you met?

  • Comment number 29.

    Brilliant Program!
    As a white South African who grew up during Apartheid and in the New South Africa I feel there is a massive amount of emotion to be struggled with. When one's mind is trained to believe one thing and then to have it changed over the course of a few months, it does not amend over night.
    Let me say now, my wife is black and from the French West Indies. Talk of a cultural shock for both families!
    I have two criticisms, why on shows like this do they always interview one radically opposed white individual who does not speak for the nation of the Afrikaaners. Who was she to represent the Afrikaaner nation?
    Secondly my wife made one comment before the show, “what is the bet this program will primarily focus on black people and not give a true response from white people!” Yes, it was good to see a mixed race couple, but at the very end of the show it seemed like a moral after thought; almost to appease the conscience of the white audience.
    I really enjoyed the program as it painted a brilliant picture of Nelson Mandela. He is a father figure for our nation, and a man I would love to meet.
    Let me close with this comment: The ‘West’ has long been a ‘moral’ judge on the Third World, let us not forget South Africa has more than two races namely Black and White – there are Indians, Africans, Mixed Race, Asian, and European. Apartheid did not only affect black people, but Asians, Mixed Race and Indians. There was also a divide between English Whites and Afrikaans White. Maybe a program will be done on this some day.
    If you have any comments please Respond
    King Regards

  • Comment number 30.

    To MosesMoses:
    I completely agree with you! How can such a complex history be packed into an hour.
    Secondly: I was in junior school when apartheid ended. It was in my second year of High School that I first had a black guy in my class (who knows how difficult it was for him). By the end on my school career I had some black friends coming home with me after school. The reason why I say this is that for someone under 13 years of age you believe what is presented to you, propaganda if you like! There was no way I could have made friends with black guys at my age cause I never met any.
    Now I have loads! My wife is black. I believe there should be a program that investigates those of us where experienced the transition in our teens as we are now the future leaders and business men and woman of South Africa.
    Kind Regards
    Thanks for the debate

  • Comment number 31.

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  • Comment number 32.

    I have just watched the programe and i have to say being an ex pat of South Africa, it was a good programme but with a few minor things i didnt agree with. I grew up during the times of apartheid and i feel that apartheid didnt just affect the blacks of south africa but also the whites, not all of us grew up in rich neighbourhoods, apartheid affected all of us, all people of South Africa. I have to agree with a lot of the comments made but Lenora should have interviewed alot more people not every white person shares the same views that of the lady she interviewed. What about the English speaking white South Africans. Even now at my age of 41 i am still defending south africa and its people whether you are white, black, coloured, indian, pink, yellow. I just find that people who do visit my home country dont always give the true reflection of our beautiful country. A bit of history always comes to mind and its my opinion that if it wasnt for the 1820 British settlers who landed at the Cape of Good Hope none of us would be here, they brought language, schooling, farming and not forgetting Jan Van Riebeeck who landed in the Cape in 1652, the Dutch East Indian company. People should go back into history and realize that if South Africa wasnt discovered where would we be today!!!!!

  • Comment number 33.

    My second post , apartheid ended in 1994, I cannot understand why we have to revisit that sad part of South African history again and again.

    Lets not forget the British hand in events leading to the apartheid state, ironically nothing much gets mentioned about the 32,000+ Afrikaaner women and children who died at the hands of the British in concentration camps during the closing stages of the Boer war.And we talk about a massare of 67 people? All crimes against humanity are sickening to the core but lets not forget the other races that also suffered in South Africa.

    Lets move on and hope South Africa, the Rainbow Nation truely lives up to Nelson's vision.

  • Comment number 34.

    Hi Sisi
    I think the answers are on the programme . As Lenora say South Africa is very complex . Many story to tell about this one country .Did we know even Mandela can not finish them himself and he is 90years of age . That is the beuaty of our God's country .So I would say go to South Africa and enjoy your own SA .Its Home ooh Sweet Home .So guys give a girl a pet on the back .Gal u v done Good .Cause I know you've open a can of what you call it .Catch me at Green Point studiam .

  • Comment number 35.

    This documentary was VERY BIASED! Lenora made it look like most whites in S.A have the views of the afrikaanse woman she interviewed, when there are many white South Africans not in support of such views and many suffering due to black on white violence. She failed to show the terrible side of South Africa for white victims, and I left feeling very annoyed with the extreme bias.

    Also, as mentioned above in another post, the necklacing of black people was definitely carried out by blacks on blacks and NOT as the journalist pointed out, I was shocked when they brought that obsurd view up, especially as they made it seem like it was true. I really can't believe how one-sided this programme was.

    Apart from that, I enjoyed a lot of the history of black South Africa, but I do wish they would have given an accurate look at how South Africa is now. So so biased.

  • Comment number 36.

    Hi Lenora

    I thought your program was great and that Nelson Mandela was a great man, the greatest and best president SA has ever seen. And I don't think Mr. Mandela has failed in any way. But I would like to say that it is a real petty that you only focused on the pre-apartheid era and not what is currently happening in South Africa. The brutal murders on all South Africans and especially farmers. You also did not mention any of the public comments being made by the current leaders in South Africa, which is quite shocking,as it is causing racial friction in the NEW South Africa. I hate apartheid and had nothing to do with it, yet in South Africa apartheid in reverse is occurring on all white people, and the whole international community is turning a blind eye to it, hence I would have appreciated your documentary even more if you would have shed some light on the current truth in South-Africa.

  • Comment number 37.

    I truly hope that Lenora or her producer reads all the comments left on this blog. I am a South African who have lived in SA for 34 years. I did not approve of apartheid and was a young adult when apratheid was abolished. I am Afrikaans and proud of my people and love my country. I am not a racist and I feel really sorry for the pain and suffering some of the people had to go through during the apartheid years. That was inhumane!
    However, your documentary was one sided and I think you need to gain a lot more experience as a journalist as you completely and utterly failed your mission! Not to mention the poor performance you made by trying to act sad and distressed with some of the people wiping away your fake tears! Absolutely pathetic! You would not know how some of the white people live in SA. It is a terrible feeling to live like a prisoner and fear for your life every day and every night! I live in the UK now with my husband who is a British citizen but still get sad and upset thinking about my family and friends left in my home country fearing for their lives on a daily basis! Next time you go to SA to do a documentary ... try to get BOTH sides of the story. You did not take the time or made an effort to see the poor white areas or talk to the white victims of crime. It would make people respect you more as a journalist. Until then don't even attempt to make another documentary in South Africa stick to Brixton.Isabel Miller

  • Comment number 38.

    One question,

    Why did Lenora try and make herself look African by changing her hair when she clearly has no connection to South Africa, why not just be herself?

    One valuable lesson in this , one cannot make opionions about South Africa from the comfort of a hotel room, you need to live and breath the country, suffer its hardships and rejoice in its celebrations and learn all it's cultures.

    I don't think that's achievable in a lifetime.

  • Comment number 39.

    I agree and feel for you Isabel, one does worry about family back home, the rapes and senseless murders are a constant fear.

    I felt the crocodile tears a bit over dramatic, as for the hard labour on Robbin Island is nonsense, the island has no quarries so the chain gang crushing stones mentality is a myth.

    Don't forget these people held there were bombing the country, many innocent people were killed, in this modern age countries are still keeping suspects locked up without trial.

    So to make out Robbin Island is unigue and the worlds only "horror" story borders on the pathetic.

    Hope your family is okay :)

  • Comment number 40.

    Sometimes the way we make our comments I can see the Afrikaner women with all her views and sometimes we try very hard to hide it but it still comes out .The oppressed have forgiven the oppresser .The are many things the programme didn't ask . The 87% land question .How voted for apartheid . Economic power in the hands of minority whites .Using R15 to educate a Black child and R350 for white child in 1982 til 1991 before Mandela come to power .There was no war in SA people .

  • Comment number 41.

    An interesting programme, and I thought Lenora's first(?) attempt at a documentary was very good, this young lady has a great future in all aspects of television.

  • Comment number 42.

    I lived in SA for many years. Its sad the journalist gave such a biased view, and formed opinions having been in the country for a few days/weeks. Would have been nice to have considered all sides to the story and not play the blame game. It gives the wrong impression of SA and incorrectly portrays certain groups.

  • Comment number 43.

    Lea Nelsons program, Well I saw the adds for this and I really wanted to give it a go. The first part of the show was reasonably OK, but then sadly it crashed into the usual chave narrow minded unintelegent crap.
    The Adds for this show were better than the program. Is this just another cheap crack for anybody with more than 2 brain cells to try to enjoy ? Real talent is not represented on TV. Have the public not got a say in the crap we have to put up with anymore ??????

  • Comment number 44.

    i think some of you missed the point of the programme. it is aimed at people who maybe familiar with her work, and vaguely familiar with mr mandela and SA but not realise the complexities, such as lenora. it was to encourage those to read and research more. this was filmed over two weeks in SA, so how much of the whole countrys history you expected them to cover i really don't know. lenora met people lined up for her. shes an actress, not a journalist, so how she was meant to network and uncover every opinion i dont know. however her journey was real, you did not see all of the conversations and circumstances around the times she was emotional, plus her dad is at home ill so there was obviously more going on, so please fall back with the fake tears comments.

    if there is so much she or the producer missed, you need to make a documentary or write some books, i doubt writing comments on bbc3 will change the worlds perception of white afrikaners or whatever you had issues with.

  • Comment number 45.

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  • Comment number 46.

    Nelson Mandela is a true leader of the people. Even at age of 90+ he commands world respect and that is only right. To most of us he is the Patron Saint Of Freedom. Those are the exact words on the stunning solid silver bust made of him by the artist Billa Dhand.

  • Comment number 47.

    So sad story about Madiba but he is a great man no matter what he tryed his best to change SA and the world.
    god bless him always and i love admire him


    james

  • Comment number 48.

    I just find that people who do visit my home country dont always give the true reflection of our beautiful country. A bit of history always comes to mind and its my opinion that if it wasnt for the 1820 British settlers who landed at the Cape of Good Hope none of us would be here, they brought language, schooling, farming and not forgetting Jan Van Riebeeck who landed in the Cape in 1652, the Dutch East Indian company. People should go back into history and realize that if South Africa wasnt discovered where would we be today!!!!!

  • Comment number 49.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

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  • Comment number 51.

    People are still fascinated by this man, by his life and his incredible charisma and how this one person could have changed the history of one country so dramatically, to give it the chance of survival in the 21st century. Indeed, he was even more than that, he was a part of the global consciousness. When I was seven, it didn't faze me that a young woman who worked as a cashier for a chain-store conglomerate called Dunnes Stores, refused to handle fruit from apartheid era South Africa. She along with ten of her colleagues were suspended from work, they staged a picket which was to last almost three years. Miraculously, they won, the government caved in a banned the importation of South African goods. What guts, what resolve, what courage these young people had, inspired by the strength of Mandela. Similarly, growing up in Ireland there were many songs about Mandela, in particular The Specials' Free Nelson Mandela which never left the radio waves in 1984.

 

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