A leading South African academic has made a passionate plea to her countrymen who are grossly “addicted to former president Nelson Mandela to be cured of this”.
Mamphela Ramphele who serves on the board of the Nelson Mandela Foundation was quoted as saying on Thursday.
She said the country which is not shy to attribute all achievements since independence in 1994 to the frail Mandela, had to start thinking about how it would handle the void that would be left by his death.
“Madiba is already 92 years old. He won’t live forever. When a parent dies, it leaves a big void. We, as a society, therefore have to think how we will handle the despondency that will come when this icon passes away,” said Ramphele.
“The best way to do this, is to find ways to give expression to the principles, ideals and dreams for which Madiba lives.” She said it was time for South Africans became quiet to listen to one another.
“Yes, we have won the admiration of the world, but we also got the reputation as a very noisy people,” said Ramphele.
Last Sunday, in his speech to celebrates Mandela’s birthday, President Zuma said the Southern African nation hailed Mandela for being “ a symbol of unity and tolerance”.
The ruling ANC likened Mandeba “to the biblical Moses, who led the children of Israel from oppression to the promised land. Madiba did the same for South Africa”.
It went further to say the ANC is “very much excited to drink from his fountain of wisdom and were anointed with the Madiba blessings that will extend to the entire organization” adding that “South Africa owes its success to uTata uMadiba”.
South Africa, despite its impressive bidding proposal to host the 2010 world cup, says the former president through his “Madiba Magic” was the major factor in landing the host rights.