On December 5th 2013 South Africa lost a statesman and the world lost an icon – Nelson Mandela. We feel like a loss because of how phenomenal he was but in reality Madiba rested, after a full life. So every year on 18th of July the world joins South Africa in celebrating Mandela’s birthday. Today would have been his 100th birthday. He taught us the tenacity of the human spirit in that even after a 27 yearlong imprisonment he still had the will to fight for and achieve human rights and a better future for his countrymen.

He worked to bring harmonious existence between all the residents of South Africans respective of their skin colour and social status. His wisdom gave us nuggets of quotes that will remain relevant to our world till end of time.

At #defyhatenow we are a diverse team from Germany, Uganda, South Sudan, Egypt, Sudan and Kenya, we join the world in celebrating #Mandela100. With the diversity in our team his quote “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” reminds us to work harmoniously and with love for one another.

In an effort to achieve a peaceful coexistence like we always endeavour to at #defyhatenow with our partners he reminds us, “Courageous people do not fear forgiving, for the sake of peace.” His vision for Africa and world peace was very apparent in his actions and work. He stated that, he dreamed of an Africa which is in peace with itself. We should all work towards a peaceful Africa and world.

He once stated, “I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.” Let’s never give up in our efforts to remind the world of the importance of peace and love. And today as the world marks #Mandela100 his quote, “sometimes it falls on a generation to be great you can be that generation” reminds the South Sudanese in South Sudan and in the diaspora that it falls on each person to change his/her own world no matter how small the change looks.

 #Mandela100 #defyhatenow #Mandeladay