New Age Islam
Fri Oct 23 2020, 06:06 PM

Current Affairs ( 6 Dec 2013, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Great, Greater and Greatest Are Comparative Terms, the Giant Is Not: Nelson Mandela Was a Giant for Justice


By Rashid Samnakay, New Age Islam

December 07, 2013















Nelson Mandela

De Klerk, the last of the apartheid regime’s white leader of South Africa is like a good villain-actor whom people love to hate but ignore the real personality behind the façade.

De Klerk was the one who recognised the gene 46664 trapped in the prison cell on Roby Island for close to three decades. He had the courage and dared to release the Giant to freedom that the world knows today as Nelson Mandela and acknowledges him as the Giant of Justice.

The Rainbow Nation that is spawned by them both would be well advised to recognise the personality behind the villainous façade of De Clerk and give him the rightful place and honour in his life-time the same as was given to Nelson Mandela.

One would never know in what context Mandela said the following, but it is so fitting if it is applied to De Klerk—Mandela has said: "I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear".

It was no mean feat that De Klerk conquered the fear and overcame it in taking the giant political and moral step; particularly when the whites, and some of non-whites too in the world, believe that it is divinely ordained that the colour of skin is the permanent hallmark of superior or inferior race of human being.

The whites there were born to believe that they were ‘divinely’ superior. Once again Nelson Mandela exposed the falsehood by saying: “No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

Like the religious Jihadist, and their brigadier teachers who shelter under the holy umbrellas will soon find that the “wind of change” will tear their canopy to bits; same as the majority racist’s whites in the Republic of South Africa had found to their dismay.

To have taken on the might of this religious and cultural enemies, was therefore a courageous act for De Klerk to have taken.

If it was not for both Mandela and De Klerk—and some other notable human greatest like Mother Teresa and Martin Luther King to have accepted the Nobel Peace Prize, there would be no nobility in the war-monger-corporation’s ill-gotten money prize!

The Giant for Justice Nelson Mandela had understood the true meaning of justice. In order to bring to equilibrium the two pans of the measuring instrument called balance. There has to be the knowledge of the operation of the measuring instrument. To know who was the victim and who was the guilty. So as to establish reparation for the victim and to show generosity in granting amnesty to the guilty and then the application of equity. It needed a state commission to establish the facts.

The setting up of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission TRC, under the chairmanship of another great personage of Archbishop Desmond Tutu was just such an act.

Interestingly it was mandated not to apply the ‘victor’s justice’ for even the ruling political party ANC was to appear before the Commission as equal! A rare step in the world of power.

Nelson Mandela was wise enough to realise that to complete the task of the TRC will take generations to come. It takes time and the willingness on the part of misguiding forces, both religious and cultural; and also the future generation to embark on the task in hand.

He therefore left this to the younger generation; which amazingly in the developed countries mostly had embraced, at least for now to ‘make poverty a history’ in order to equalise humanity as a whole: "It is time for the next generations to continue our struggle against social injustice and for the rights of humanity. It is in your hands", he said.

Though Nelson Mandela only saw glimpses of that spirit, yet he knew the task is far from over. It must have looked to him like two steps forward and one step back. But Mandela has a fellow traveller in the fight to make poverty history.

Pope Frances has joined him. In his various pronouncements on poverty and capitalism he is shaking the conscience of the rich. For they are the main writers in writing such a history.

The rich in their richness lose all values: “With the ‘culture of waste’ human life is no longer considered the primary value to be respected and protected”, he said. And that “to waste and be extravagant is stealing from the poor”.

Being religious, both Mandela and the Pontiff must have read few books of other faiths:

“…those who believe keep their wealth free flowing…2- 2” and “God does not love the extravagant waster… 7-31 says one such Book.

Mandela the world loved your ever smiling, grey haired wisdom in life and mourns your passing now; but also there is the joy of knowing that you left a legacy to the modern world leaders what a down trodden nation like yours, with the wisdom and sincerity that comes from the heart of a leader, can set in motion to bring the two pans of justice to equilibrium in human society.

The task you set is immense and the obstacles are many; in particular the human weakness, that of the leaders who believe that ‘greed is good’.

The same leaders will attend in doves with their entourage at State expense your funeral service and pay token lip service to your legacy; but no doubt there will be a few individuals who sincerely would like to follow in your footsteps.

We therefore love you and thank you Madiba for the legacy you left to mankind. May God, the one who gave you the gifts of wisdom in life also rest you in Peace where ever you may be!

A regular contributor to New Age Islam, Rashid Samnakay is a (Retd.) Engineer