Nelson Mandela: The Homecoming

Nelson Mandela: The Homecoming

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Good evening and welcome to Pretoria, the ninth day of mourning


for Nelson Mandela gave us a revealing and different glimpse of


Mandela's life, not Mandela the statesman acclaimed by President


Obama on Tuesday at the FNB Stadium in Soweto. Not Mandela mourned by


the thousands of South Africans who filed past his coffin over the past


three days. But Nelson Mandela, the freedom fighter, reclaimed by the


organisation that was his home, the ANC, the African National Congress.


It was the ANC which fought the battle against apartheid, first


peacefully and then under Mandela's leadership, by adopting a policy of


violence. A policy which led to his 27 and a half years of imprisonment.


It was the ANC which took the lead in negotiating the abolition of


apartheid. And it is the ANC which now forms the government of South


Africa. All sections of the ANC came to sing his praises and tell the


story of the struggle, MK, the military wing of the ANC was here,


the commonest party, fighters for women's writes, members of the


Mandela family and President Jacob Zuma who himself spent ten years in


prison on Robben Island. After the sendoff ceremony was over,


Mandela's coffin was placed in the hold of a huge C130 for a short


flight to Mthatha in the Eastern Cape. Just after midday, the plane


took off and Mandela left the capital Pretoria for the last time.


Already at face macro, a human chain had formed, an informal guard of


honour, with people waiting for his coffin to come past. They did not


have to wait too long because the hearse made its way along the road


to Mandela's home village of Qunu where the funeral will take place


early tomorrow morning. George Alagiah is in Qunu tonight. It may


be just a couple of hours flight from Pretoria, but the atmosphere


here in Qunu could not be more different. It is a bit like going


back in time. Nelson Mandela made the journey several times himself


when he was the president. He often said at heart he was a country boy.


All eyes are now on a small patch of land behind me. It is unremarkable


to look at but after this, it will be forever remembered as the last


resting place for one of the world's greatest statesman. From


where I am standing, I can just about see into Nelson Mandela's


family compound. The big white structure, that is the massive


marquee which will host the funeral itself. Away from the compound, in


the hills and villages around, there is a real sense that their most


famous son has finally come home. There is a tradition here that a


person must be buried near where their umbilical chord was buried


when they were born. So there is nothing exceptional about Mr Mandela


being buried here. Organising an international event in a remote area


like this would be tough at the best of times, but the organisers have


had to put up with some torrential rain over the last few days, as


heavy as anyone can remember at this time of year. I hope that gives you


some idea of this corner of the Eastern Cape, which, in a few hours,


will become the focus of global attention. When they have spoken


about it, the Mandela family themselves have said they do not


want this home to become a place of pilgrimage. I suppose they wanted to


stay what it was for Mr Mandela himself, a private place where his


then some of his happiest times. George, thank you very much. We will


be joining George Alagiah from time to time over today and tomorrow. I'm


joined by three guests here, Moeletsi Mbeki, a political analyst


who is the brother of the former president Thabo Mbeki. Yvonne


Muthien who is chair of the President's Advisory Council, and


Dial Dayana Ndima, who is a cultural and traditional expert, experts on


traditions anyway. Let's deal with today's events. What was the message


of today's events compared with those of the previous ceremonies in


the last four days? I thought the message was essentially the ANC


recounting Nelson Mandela's role as an activist in the ANC. That is how


I understood it. Although, of course, there has been some kind of


confusion as to whether we were dealing with the ANC or the South


African government. This has been one of the problems. But I thought


today it was essentially the ANC on its own saying farewell to Mandela.


And not using it as a political platform for the elections next


year, being dead straight in doing it. I thought they were straight.


The elections are months to come. I did not think it would have any


impact, even if they tried to use it for elections. Yvonne Muthien, what


did you make of it? It is important to remember that Mandela himself


said that he was a leader who was chosen by the ANC and that he was a


disciplined member of the ANC. And so the success of the struggle, the


negotiations that led to him becoming president was due to the


ANC. He always used that word disciplined, he said I am a


disciplined member and then he took the lead and consulted them after.


He also argued that he leads from behind and yet he was very much on


the front line. When MK was formed, the military wing, he was one of the


first to go out to receive military training. And yes, he was a very


determined man. But what does disciplined means? That he does what


he is told? He gets them to agree? Indeed. Once he has made up his


mind, he has a clear idea of what he wants to achieve. He does listen but


then he does what he needs to do anyway. Professor, I will talk to


you in a moment about another aspect of this ceremony which people are


intrigued about which is the tribal elders but first of all, let's have


a look at what did happen today. The day began at Waterkloof Air Force


Base. It was a very emotional day organised by the ANC, the


organisation which Nelson Mandela belonged to for most of his adult


life. The cortege carrying Nelson


Mandela's coffin arrived at Waterkloof Air Force Base for a


sendoff from the African National Congress, for its last journey home


to Qunu. Over 1000 people were there. Among them, President Zuma,


Mandela's widow, Graca and his second wife, Winnie. The coffin was


draped with the flag of South Africa but was replaced with the flag of


the ANC for the ceremony. The service began with the National


Anthem, accompanied on a solo violin.


The verses of the National Anthem son, as always, in five of the 11


languages most commonly sung here. The first tribute was from the trade


union movement. We have come here today to give our final sendoff to a


soldier who did his work for the ANC with exceptional devotion and


excellence. As I was struggling in my mind as to what to say on this


occasion today, I came across a piece of a paper entitled I am free.


It says, don't cry for me now I am free. I am following the path God


laid for me, I took his hand when I heard him call, I turned my back and


left it all. I could not stay another day to love, to laugh, work


or play, past left undone must stay that way, I found peace at the close


of day. If my passing has left a void, then fill it, with remembering


joy, friendship shared, I laugh, a kiss, oh yes, the things I too will


miss. We want to take a few minutes to


send our deepest condolences to Graca Machel, the Mandela family, to


the South African nation, the whole African continent, the world and


also the African National Congress, Mr President, for giving us this


brilliant revolutionaries. May you continue to produce many more


revolutionaries and may his fighting spirit live on. Long live the spirit


of comrades Nelson Mandela! Long-lived! Forward revolution


forward! Thank you. Next we heard from Mandla Mandela who was to


accompany his grandfather's coffin back to Qunu.


Some years back, when I was only a youngster, I used to hear youth in


Soweto shouting. And I used to think I was the popular kid, because my


name was being shouted. More profound, they used to say these are


Mandela, Viva. And I used to say my name and my surname in the same day,


I must be very important! Naive I was because I was just a


nine-year-old boy. My president, for the past three days, I have sat with


my grandfather while he has been lying in state. I have witnessed his


army, I have witnessed his people, I have witnessed ordinary South


Africans who walked this Long Walk To Freedom with him. And I can


assure the African National Congress today, that the future of this


country looks bright. Thank you very much, Mandla.


The people's poet recited in honour of Mandela. In 1912, the African


National Congress was born. The movement grew from strength to


strength, from urban to rural, from rural to the farms, from farms to


the hinterlands, from the hinterlands to the valleys. In


Africa, the greatest survivor, the survivor who survived all episodes


from assassinations, imprisonments, poisoning, orders, banishment,


cross-border raids. 100 years of exploitation and oppression. 100


years against injustice and tyranny, the ANC for better life,


the ANC for total emancipation. The movement produced the current test


of the leaders, the movement of people, the movement of


visionaries, the spear of the nation, MK at unleashed telling


blows. We salute the first black president of a democratic South


Africa. I dedicate this poem to the heroes of the struggle. My praising


cannot be complete unless I dedicate this praise to comrades Oliver


Tambo. The movement has survived all kinds of tragedies from infiltration


to abuse, from abuse to betrayal, from betrayal to resistance, from


resistance to resilience, from resilience to power and from power


to freedom! After those words, composed specially for today, Jacob


Zuma delivered his tribute. Today we are saying to Madiba, as


you came as a young man in Johannesburg, today, having


departed, we are now sending you back to a village at Qunu. We want


you to rest in peace there. We want you to always remember and guide


us. We are happy that we were still young -- we who are still young will


join you later, as you promised to establish a branch of the ANC, we


will join you there. Tomorrow we will be saying a final


goodbye to Madiba at Qunu, and I'm sure that many of us will be there.


We would like to say to Madiba, go well, Tata. You have played your


part, you have made your contribution. We will always


remember you, we will always keep you in our hearts. We will always


learn from your lessons. Amandla! After his speech, President Zuma led


the audience in a song specially written for the 100th anniversary of


the ANC. Finally, a vote of thanks from the


Mandela family. The Mandela family is not the only


family that had to share their leader, their father, their


grandfather with the African National Congress. Jacob Zuma, Thabo


Mbeki and all the former presidents of the African National Congress and


their families had to undergo gruelling sacrifice during those


days, and I would like to thank them as well.


APPLAUSE Good morning. We would also like to


thank the organisers of this event. Although our grandfather is


receiving a state funeral, the ANC was quite adamant in having this


ceremony, and we would like to thank you for this glorious sendoff. We


would like to thank all the ordinary members of the ANC. These past few


days have been quite difficult, and there were a lot of people who


ensured that people were fed and people were well taken care of. We


would like to thank you. I must say, from the numbers I see here


today, that next year's election should be quite a successful one!


CHEERS As we take our grandfather back to his final resting place, you


can be sure that there is a commitment from us that when he


arrives to the gates of heaven, he will arrive there with his


membership card close to him. Thank you.


And so ended the ANC farewell to Mandela. His close friend and fellow


prisoner joined other ANC party members to escort the coffin out of


the hangar at the airbase. And so the ANC, having said their


final goodbyes, the military takeover. Nelson Mandela's last


journey to his homeland, to Mthatha airport in the Eastern Cape.


Moeletsi Mbeki, do you feel the ANC think they have achieved everything


they set out to achieve? No, I don't think so. I think


Mandela's generation felt they achieved what they set out to


achieve, which was to get rid of apartheid and to initiate a


constitutional, democratic constitution for South Africa. That


is what they set out to achieve, that is Mandela's generation, Walter


Sisulu, my father, all those people. Their assignment was not to change


the economy of South Africa. It was a very specific task that they gave


themselves. Now the ANC is in different hands, it is no longer in


the Mandela generation. It is in a younger generation, as President


Zuma pointed out, and it has a different assignment. We have a


democratic country, we have a democratic constitution, but we have


hugely different problems, poverty and so on. Because there does seem


to be a feeling among ANC members, not the people like you who actually


work within the ANC, but the people who vote for the ANC, that somehow


apartheid went, as Moeletsi Mbeki says, but what has followed has not


been at inspiring or exciting. Yes, there has been rising expectations,


and in terms of service delivery, there have been huge challenges. The


ideals set out in the constitution make, essentially, very large


promises, and 20 years is clearly not sufficient to deliver on those


ideals. So the ANC now being the ruling partly, it does have a


responsibility to not just grow democracy or consolidates democracy,


but also to grow the economy and to make sure that youth unemployment


goes down, that the educational system is improved. Do you think


people expected faster progress than the ANC has been able to deliver?


Most certainly. Why so difficult, then? Well, I think the ruling


party, and certainly many of us who went into government during


Mandela's time, had underestimated the deep-rooted legacies of


apartheid, and we had also underestimated the scale of the


transition that we would have to affect, and you can rarely do that


in a 20 year period. It would take half a century. Because you were


involved in the kind of creation of the image of the state, when chewed


you might in charge of designing flags, medals, goodness knows what,


so you must have been thinking, we are on our way. Most certainly,


there was a great deal of optimism, but there were dedicated men and


women who slogged and worked really hard at putting in the key pillars


of the new democratic state. And we needed to create a new national


identity, a need for new national symbols. Did you expect the degree


of corruption that people complain about? It seems to have gone on in a


different way, not just failing to deliver but also the allegations


against President Zuma and many members of the ANC in government,


that they have lined their pockets or their families' pockets? Well...


Well, to tell you the honest truth, I didn't. The ANC had been a key


organisation, I was in exile for nearly 30 years with the ANC, I


never had any evidence of corruption in the ANC. So it was a huge shock


to me, anyway, when I started seeing the corruption, and the first


corruption I came across was my company, which was a construction


company, it wanted to rebuild, to modernise a university by providing


proper accommodation for students and a new shopping centre. And it


turned out that the land that belongs to the municipality where we


were going to build the new shopping centre, the mayor was an ANC mayor


anti-had already soldered, illegally, to some business friend.


-- and he had already sold it. Let's go back to the celebrations, the


huge achievements of apartheid coming to an end and the courage


that was shown, but tomorrow, Professor, we go into a slightly


different gear, because Mandela's body is now in Qunu, and people are


fascinated by what happens now and by what the tribal members of the


Thembu tribe will do. Can you explain what it is that happens now


that the body is out of the hands of the state Schumacher... That is what


happens when a member of the family dies away from home, when he is


eventually delivered home, he is received by the elders, who then


speak to the body, receiving it, and telling the body the way forward. Do


they actually speak out loud to the body, who do they whisper? What


happens? They speed light to it. -- they speak loud do it. What will


they be saying? It is not something that is cast in stone, it will


differ from area to area, from family to family, but the sense is


the same. It is that we, your children, your brothers, are now


receiving new home for the burial. -- receiving you home. They will be


speaking in that way. But would they say, for instance, when he went


aboard the plane, would they have been saying... It is difficult to


imagine, are they saying, we are going to your home? They would say


those things? That is exactly right. When they collected the body, they


say the same thing. You are among friends, do not worry, we are taking


you home. Yes. And at the funeral, what happens? They go on talking to


him? Yes, at the funeral, the same thing, before the body is finally


buried, they would talk to the body, now we are taking you to that


final resting place we promised to take you to, this is now the time.


We will see all of that tomorrow, but let's just have a look at the


journey from here in Pretoria to Qunu. It did not take more than an


hour and a half or so for the plane to get there, and there, at Mthatha


airport, Graca Machel and Winnie, and thousands from his homeland in


the Eastern Cape, the place where he came from, were waiting to catch a


final glimpse of their hero as the plane came in.


A very different countryside here. The Greenhills near where Mr Mandela


lived, where he was brought up and that he remembered so fondly. People


were waiting but there was a national ceremonial guard here and


the band. And also a guard of honour to greet the coffin when the plane


finally came to a halt. The pallbearers are senior officers


of the Navy, the air force and the army. The band playing and the guard


of honour dressed in green. The band in red. All the bands across South


Africa are in red so they can join together in one huge ceremonial


band. The guard of honour are carrying Lee Enfield rifles, those


old-fashioned World War II rifles with bayonets fixed, much easier to


do drill with than the modern ones. The Hearst roars up and the bearer


party of warrant officers will go into receive the coffin -- the


hearse draws up. And then the chaplain will in effect, welcomed


the body. The flag of the union of South


Africa now has replaced the ANC flag which we saw earlier when the coffin


was in Pretoria at that ANC rally. We want to thank you this day for


Madiba, that he is safely returned to his home province. We want to


thank you for the amazing person, human being that he was. And we want


to ask you that you will help us all to have the same spirit of


reconciliation, the same attitude of forgiveness and a similar vision for


the new South Africa. We want to ask that you will comfort and strengthen


and sustain or his family members, relatives, friends and all of us,


this day and during this time of sorrow and morning. We make this


prayer in your name, amen. Winnie and Graca Machel, comforting


each other as they have been over these past few days, whenever they


have appeared together in public, and indeed, when Mr Mandela was ill


in his home in Houghton, they were frequently there together as well.


And so with its military guard running after it, the hearse leaves


the runway and sets off on the journey, not a long journey, to


Qunu, Nelson Mandela's homeland, Nelson Mandela's home, I should say,


the place where he built the house when he came out of jail and wanted


to live quietly in retirement. She recently, a strange sight, those


carriers which were used in Soweto during the rights to suppress


trouble and they are now here taking part in the procession of the coffin


followed by the family. Once again, Graca helped into her car by Winnie.


After that rather impressive, formal reception of the coffin, the scene


changes. My goodness, the reaction here was different really from


Pretoria when the procession was going up to the union buildings.


This was a much more exuberant reception. Definitely. These are


villagers say they express themselves I suppose, more


spontaneously. And he is their man, they are proud of him coming back.


He's coming home and they are very proud that they have produced a


leader of that calibre. All the way along the route,


wherever there was a village, there were crowds. It is like a wasteland


to go through, just a few houses and you know it well, Professor, this


route to Qunu? Yes, I know it. These people on the sides here, they are


farm workers, rural people on the whole? Are the industries here, is


their work for people here? Yes, but mostly they are peasants from the


village. A guard of honour here. There is


nobody to hold back. And so he comes to Qunu, yes? That is right. That is


his home. And that is his house? Yes. And tonight, the body is in the


house, is that right? Yes. And with the family? What happens? Normally,


there is a vigil. What does that consist of? Individual consists of


the locals, ordinary people, where they will keep awake, sitting


around, next to the coffin. And sitting in silence or talking to


each other? Praying or just being there. Nowadays it is mostly singing


and praying. And religious presence prayers said or not? Yes, why I am


saying nowadays is it is mostly religious singing, Kristian songs.


What did it used to be? It comes from a culture of the African


religion which was different. It was being kept by the elders. Is there


an element of that still or is that gradually fading away, the role of


the Elders? It is not fading, but now there has been the edition with


the addition of the Christian version. But the elders are still


part of it. Do you feel it is strong that element? The Christian


religion? No, the role of the elders? The slaughter of the


animals. Cultural tradition lasts a very long time. Culture brings


comfort during time of mourning. Even though the younger generation


does not literally always believe in all elements, there is great comfort


from following the rituals. In the case of this elder statesman, they


assume even higher symbolic significance. Does it make


difficulty for government if you have different sources of power, if


you have local power in this region and then you are trying to run the


modern government? There are constitutional relationships between


these different structures, so there is actually a system of how they


interface with one another. And remember, the traditional leadership


is paid by the government. You mean they do what they are told? I do not


know! But they are paid. People who are paid normally do as they are


told but not always. One forgets that Mandela's father defied the


government, defied the authorities when Mandela was only one-year-old.


He defied the magistrate. He lost his land. This was under British


rule, he lost as land, lost his cattle and they had to move from the


town where he was born to Qunu. Anyway, we will go back to that


later on. One of the places the funeral cortege passed through was


Ultra City. And in the crowd was Fergal Keane. All week long, people


have been waiting for this moment, the point when Nelson Mandela's


cortege will arrive back in his own place. It is expected any moment now


to pass through here. There is a real sense of celebration of his


life. We have been talking to people in the crowd throughout the morning.


Many got up after midnight just to get here. They have travelled


hundreds of kilometres. What does it mean to you to be here? Basically


everything. It is part of who we are, part of our heritage, part of


my children's lives, this is our future, being together with all of


these people as part of our future. Showing my children where and how


somebody might pass, and not having to worry about anything or anybody.


Freedom is the most important thing. Without that, what do we have? We


have nothing without freedom. There are many children and young people


here, part of what is called in South Africa, the born free


generation, those who grew up after the end of apartheid, and after the


end of nonracial elections in 1994. It is now about 30 minutes until the


cortege is expected to pass here. The atmosphere is very relaxed, you


can see that the police have been gently asking people to move back, a


lot of the time without much success!


Now we can see the police outriders and the cortege arriving here. There


is a great surge from the crowd. People are chanting, go well, spirit


of the nation. You have just seen Nelson Mandela


passed to his final journey, what is your feeling at this moment? I am


happy and sad at the same time. It is an exciting moment for me,


because it is the first time I have seen them, but it is the last time I


will see him at the same time, which really hurts me, because he has done


a lot for our country, he has made it possible for a number of


different races to sit in the same classes and given us a better


opportunity in life. Thank you very, very much.


Nelson Mandela always said he wanted to be buried in Qunu, I talked to


him some years ago about what it was that made this place so very


important to him. A narrow grassy valley crisscrossed


by clear streams and overlooked by green hills. Nelson Mandela's


description of Qunu, the small village in the Eastern Cape where he


spent his happiest childhood days. Even as he played there, though,


hence could be seen of the man he would become. As a boy, you know, in


the countryside, I was one of the most experts stick fighters, but I


fought boys, never people who would resist me. I cannot fight somebody


who does not resist me. I want to fight somebody who can fight me


back. During his time there, he learnt about his heritage. My father


was a traditional leader, and both he and my mother had never been to


school. And therefore they taught me about the traditions, the customs of


our people. The way they taught me about the old stories of bravery


amongst our people, you know, I wished I had lived during those


days. And they really inspired me. Mandela's father died when he was


nine, and he moved away from Qunu and became the ward of the chief of


the Thembu clan. Returning 60 years later on his release from prison,


Mandela was keen to see Qunu again. My whole world was around this


place, but as I grew up, it extended. My roots have not left


home, but my gaze is beyond the horizon. He built a home in Qunu and


settled once more in the place where his journey had begun.


What does this place, Qunu, mean to you? Oh, it means a lot in the sense


that I was brought here when I was a baby, and this is where I grew up.


So these hills are your home? Oh, yes. It evokes very pleasant


memories, my being here. What memories? Of childhood, the stones


were used to play, see those dreams? There are stones there where I used


to play as a child. The rivers where I fished, they broke very happy


memories. Whenever I die, I will be buried here. This is where I am


going to be buried. Very adamant that he was going to be


buried in Qunu. There was a great dispute, some members of his family,


their bodies were moved away, but now they are back in Qunu, within


the area of his house. The stones he slid down, he said he slid down so


often that he got a sore bottom and could not do it any more! It has


been a very big challenge for Qunu to do this, 4500 people coming


tomorrow to one of the largest funerals South Africa has ever seen.


George Alagiah is there and knows what they are doing. George.


You can just imagine the frantic last-minute arrangements going on in


the Mandela family compound behind me. Although they have had months,


perhaps even years to plan this event, nothing could actually be


built or visit until the last few days. Now, all along, the funeral


has been billed as the most private event in this week of national


mourning that we have seen, but it is not the kind of privacy that you


or I would recognise. There are up to 5000 guests, and that has been


the challenge all along for the organisers. Nelson Mandela belonged


to the whole world, so tonight his body will be kept in the family


home. Now, I am no expert, but under the tradition of the Xhosa speaking


people, it will be the jobs of the elders to reunite Mr Mandela's


spirit with his mortal remains, and this is done by apparently talking


to the person, reminding them of significant places and people. We


think there will be two distinct parts to the funeral service


tomorrow, the first part will be the state funeral for a former


president. The second part will be a traditional ceremony, presided over


by the local king. Mr Mandela belonged to a minor branch of that


Royal Family, so we will see BIP is arriving, then the family will take


the coffin from the house, up the gravel path to the marquee a little


way up that hill. -- VIPs. Inside there will be an orchestra, a choir,


and then a much smaller group will attend the actual burial itself. As


I have reported on the events of the week a theme has emerged, and Trent


to bring together the different strands of his life. You see, he


meant different things to different people, and for his beloved ANC was


an unrivalled political figure, for the world he was a symbol of moral


authority, and of course for the people here he is simply a returning


son. George touches on an interesting


point there, which is the different ways in which Nelson Mandela is


perceived. I have to say, if you can hear the noise on the roof, we are


in the middle of a summer storm with lightning flashing around us, but I


think we are in the middle of a summer storm with lightning flashing


around us, but I think we as a sign of somebody who, quite genuinely,


was in one way was a very simple person who held onto his roots. That


is. Mandela was essentially quite a modest man. -- that is correct.


Despite the international recognition and accolades, he was


very grounded. I recall stories of when he had first become president,


and he would travel on international state visits, and he would ask his


Director-General to help him but the mattress on the floor so that they


could sleep comfortably, but to come very early to put the mattress back


on the bed in order not to offend his hosts. So, in many respects, he


remained humble, yet he was quite aware of his leadership capability


and power, and his ability to move things and to move people. And he


used people. Andy Hughes did effectively. How would those


qualities... And he used it effectively. How would those


qualities have been sustained during his time in jail? That gives a lot


of time for reflection... Far too much time! But what one does not


often see is the dark moments that he had and the self-doubt as to


whether he did the right thing. His convictions never wavered, but


certainly, when Winnie Mandela had been tortured and in solitary


confinement, and the children were left alone, that really, really put


him through his darkest moments. And of course, when his son died, and


the head of the prisons would not give him permission to bury his own


son, he went through quite a dark moments of depression, and Walter


Sisulu had to kind of help him through that. Of course, your father


was also in Robben Island. Did he have a similar experience to Nelson


Mandela in terms of coming in as one kind of person and emerging, in a


sense, as a different sort of person, more assured and confident


about where the ANC was going? Well, first, in my father's family, no-one


died, as happened in the case of Mandela. I think his mother also


died when he was in prison. Yes. So we did not have that experience. Did


you get to see him? I was in exile, so I couldn't go and see him. But


they were so determined, that was one of the most striking things


about it. When I eventually met my father after 30 or so years, it was


like we had never left, because we had all been working on the same


thing, which is how to get rid of this evil apart aid regime. --


apartheid regime. So the dialogue restarted where it had ended in the


1950s. No hesitation among the people who had been 20 or 25 years


in Robben Island? Nobody backsliding? None whatsoever. They


were very determined, they were very clear what the objective was, they


were very clear what needed to be done in order to achieve the


objective, and my father never talked about prison, for example.


You might make a joke about some experience, but he never talked


about prison. At what point do you think they decided that they would


win, or maybe they realised they would win? Well, that is a very


difficult question to answer! It is meant to be! Because, actually, when


the negotiations started, the South African government was at its


strongest point, because it had been at war in Angola and in the movie,


and so the negotiations actually started when the South African army


was back in South Africa. -- in the media. There were piece agreements


with the Angolans and the Cubans, so it was at its strongest. I do not


think they thought that this was a winning moment. You do not think


they thought, one day our strategy will work? There was a believe that


freedom would come, but it was a hard slog, the negotiations were


hard work, and both sides had to give quite a lot. And the decision


about when to start talking? Yes, well, that was made in prison, and


as you know, Madiba's cohort, they were not all agreed that they should


negotiate, in fact, that the struggle should continue, but he


managed to persuade them. Professor, we have coming to the end of this,


but the elders at this moment are sitting around the coffin in Qunu,


is that right? Yes. And talking to the body? They would have talked to


it when it arrived. And they will spend the night just in vigil Jim


Mack we will hear more about it tomorrow. You are with us tomorrow,


I think, thank you very much for coming in. It is very nice to have


you here. That ends this look back at today's events, Nelson Mandela's


last journey is nearly over. Tonight the coffin stays at his home in


Qunu, and tomorrow we will be back at 5:30am on BBC One for the state


funeral and the burial of the former president in the grounds of his home


in Qunu. I hope you will be able to join us then. Until then, good




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