Mandela month: Why South Africa’s legacy is in safe hands


South Africa has a troubled past. But the turbulence of our history was a crucible that forged some of the world’s most respected leaders. Nelson Mandela was an icon who lived a life of service, committed to doing everything in his power to leave things better than he found it. For his 90th birthday, Mandela handed down the torch to future generations, saying, "It is in your hands to make of our world a better one for all."

This month marks Mandela’s centenary. And to start it, we are celebrating our youth. Full of potential, driven by the willingness to create the change our country needs. “Let’s stand up and do things on our own,” says Mbali Mahlale, the 11-year-old who was born without arms, and is using her differences to inspire. Her sentiments are shared by others who, despite their ages, are maintaining our former president’s legacy. The spirit of yesterday’s pioneers, their courage and determination, lives on in the leaders of tomorrow.