By Odey Lukpata
- The United Nations designated July 18 as Nelson Mandela International Day, also known as Mandela Day. It is celebrated annually on his birthday, July 18. The day was officially set by the UN in November 2009. The first Mandela Day was observed on July 18, 2010.
- His real name is not Nelson.
- His real name Rolihlahla, means “troublemaker in Isixhosa. The name ‘Nelson’ was given to him on his first day at school by his teacher, Miss Mdingane.
- Mandela as a president appeared in court and stood as the only witness during the court proceeding to divorce his wife “Winnie Madikizela-Mandela”.
- He married Graça Machel, the widow of the former president of Mozambique Samora Machel on his 80th Birthday.
- He was called a terrorist by the apartheid regime of South Africa. Both Thatcher and U.S. President Ronald Reagan accused and labelled Mandela and the ANC of being communists and terrorists in the 1980s.