|Nelson Mandela (centre) his wife Graca Machel (left) and Ex-US President Bill Clinton.Pictures Courtesy|
Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela the first President of free South Africa marks his 94th birthday this. He is perhaps the longest political detainee in the world having spent 27 years behind bars before emerging in 1990 and becoming president of the Africa National Congress (ANC). In 1993, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. He served as president of South Africa from 1994-99.
Mandela has married three times, first to Evelyn Ntoko Mase, with whom he had two sons and two daughters. They divorced after 13 years together. Second, to Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, with whom he had two daughters. They divorced in 1996. Third, to Graca Machel, widow of Mozambique president Samora Machel, in 1998. The two are still married.
His famous quote is: “I dream of an Africa which is in peace with itself. I dream of the realization of unity of Africa whereby its leaders, some of whom are highly competent and experienced, can unite in their efforts to improve and to solve the problems of Africa." -- in a 2000 interview with National Geographic