Many people reflected on where they were, and the impact of Nelson Mandela's legacy on the 30th anniversary of his release Picture: Nasief Manie/AP
Many people reflected on where they were, and the impact of Nelson Mandela's legacy on the 30th anniversary of his release Picture: Nasief Manie/AP

WATCH: Where were you when Nelson Mandela was released from prison?

By Staff Reporter Time of article published Feb 11, 2020

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Cape Town - Many people reflected on where they were, and the impact of Nelson Mandela's legacy on the 30th anniversary of his release from the Victor Verster prison on Tuesday.

The anniversary also marks and celebrates the unbanning of political parties in South Africa and the formal end of apartheid.

The anniversary comes two days before President Cyril Ramaphosa delivers the State of the Nation Address.

One of the commemorative events saw former members of the original reception committee, who facilitated Mandela’s return from prison, reunite at the Victor Verster prison, now known as the Drakenstein Correctional Centre on Tuesday.

The event will conclude with an address by the President at the City Hall balcony.

Madiba’s grandson Nkosi Zwelivelile Mandela said the commemoration provides an opportunity to reflect and ponder on the road “we have travelled and how far we have reached on the long walk to freedom. Freedom from poverty, racism and discrimination of all kinds and freedom for each South African to achieve their true potential.

Some were asked to share their thoughts, but also to share where they were on this day, 30 years ago.

Legendary Australian cricketer Shane Warne, who was at Drakenstein Correctional Centre, said: "I was very lucky to be coming to South Africa for a long period time, to see what one man did to unite people, and what he did to lead and inspire people was pretty amazing. I've been coming to South Africa for a long long time and I love this country - I played my 100th test match here in Cape Town - so I'm very honoured and very privileged to be here today to celebrate 30 years [since his release]."

Shokie Isaacs from District Six: "We do admire him for his sacrifice that he did for the nation, and we do appreciate it as hopefully our children and grandchildren will reap the benefits of what is coming in the future." 

Sybil McKinna, 69-years-old, from Atlantis: "The day when comrade Mandela was released, I was there at Victor Verster prison. We were very excited and we were very glad that he was released."

Mary Smith, from Atlantis: "Thirty years ago I was glued to the TV, watching every move, listening and watching the freedom walk."

Mitha Stockholm speaking about Mandela's release in 1990. Video: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency
Shokie Isaacs speaks about Nelson Mandela's release and its relation to District 6. Video: David Ritchie/African News Agency(ANA)
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