While the world prays for the return to good health for ageing former South African President Nelson Mandela, Africa caught its breath in realising that at long last, its own has emerged as an international icon.
It took a long time in coming though but it has come at last….a specular figure that has caught on just as it had been hoped the late Ghanaian leader, President Kwame Nkrumah would have been a beacon.
At 94, Mandela has made africa to stand tall, transcending national and continental identity, going beyong borders and zooming into prominence inspite of the fact that he is no longer a sitting leader.
You cant keep a good man down, they say, as Mandela because of his ability of zero vindictiveness and malice against none was able to vault the barricade that had turned most political leaders into monsters when they come to office.
The clamour to be identified with ”get-better-soon” messages has seen nations and individuals sommersaulting in the quest to be part of the Mandela train.
Even the sometimes western critical press could not help but be part of the package as it has been realised that Mandela remains a non-colour man in and out of office.
Many expected him to have turned his guns blazing at his jailers or those who perpetrated the full force of apartheid but he offered a quick reconciliation much to the annoyance of black militants.