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Updated: December 6, 2013 23:51 IST

‘He touched so many lives, and not just of South Africans’

Staff Reporter
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The tricolour flies at half-mast atop the Vidhana Soudha in Bangalore on Friday as a mark of respect to the former South African President Nelson Mandela. — Photo: Bhagya Prakash K.
The tricolour flies at half-mast atop the Vidhana Soudha in Bangalore on Friday as a mark of respect to the former South African President Nelson Mandela. — Photo: Bhagya Prakash K.

African students mourn Mandela’s death

Students of African origin studying in institutions in the State are saddened by the news of the death of anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela. While many hailed him as the messenger of peace, several others could not but help liken him to M.K. Gandhi, who is often compared to the former South African President.

Romeshvari Muthumanikam, who is of Indian origin but was born and brought up in South Africa, called Mandela ‘a great person.’ Pursuing her final year MBA at the University of Mysore (she came to India in 2008), she said, “He touched so many lives and not just of South Africans. It is indeed a sad day but his death did not come as a shock as he had been ailing for sometime and was 95 years old.”

Ms. Muthumanikam also said the best way to honour him was to take his teachings forward. “We should retain everything he has done and continue living in his footsteps. We owe him that much,” she added.

Rwandan national Robert Manzi, a final year Masters of Science in Information Technology student at Jain University, Bangalore, said it was a sad day for Africa. “He is one of the leaders that people should learn from. Though I am not from South Africa, there is so much to learn from him. There are so many tribal wars going on in various African countries. Mandela led the country in peace. His character was unquestionable,” he said.

Tamarakaro Gomeromo from Nigeria, who is studying third year in computer engineering at Jain University, Bangalore, recalled the shock that the news brought to many like him. “It was personally shocking as I woke up to the news on a social networking site. Mandela is an icon and we loved him because he stood for peace. He spent 27 years in prison and when he came back, he still fought for peace just like Mahatma Gandhi,” he said.

Mr. Gomeromo also said a condolence get together would be organised soon in the city for African students in remembrance of Mr. Mandela.

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MR. NELSON MANDELA, THE TALLEST LEADER Africa has ever produced so far, an undaunted fighter against Apartheid for decades, is no more. His memory will ever remain in the hearts of all who value justice and fair play in human relationships, throughout the world. May his lofty soul find peace in heaven eternally.

from:  Radhakrishnan Kanoor
Posted on: Dec 7, 2013 at 22:41 IST
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