Birthday messages pour in for Mandela

Johannesburg- South Africa (PANA) -- Birthday messages have started pouring in for South Africa's former President Nelson Mandela, who turns 85 Friday "As you turn 85 years younger and stronger, we turn our eyes on the thorny path we have traversed over decades under your leadership.
We also focus our eyes over many years more to come that together with you and under your guidance we still have to traverse," said Sibusiso Ndebele, chair of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) in KwaZulu Natal.
Ndebele said Wednesday that the ANC remained certain that Mandela's "wisdom, caring hand, dedication and his spirit of no surrender will see them through many obstacles that lie ahead.
" "Over decades, you have weathered the storms.
You performed like an ace in the eye of the storm.
You could only do this because you are the product of the organisation whose ethos, values and spirit you helped to shape, the African National Congress," the party official added.
Among the birthday messages posted on the Website was one from Marian Mathot from the Netherlands, who said: "I may live in Holland, but in my heart I will be in South Africa for your birthday.
" One James Kanu from Rome, Italy wished "Madiba" a happy birthday and thanked him for ensuring that "we Africans can walk tall and full of pride after years of oppression and humiliation.
" "May God bless you to reach 100 years.
You are an idol and you were just what this beautiful country of ours needed," said Ryan Williamson from South Africa.
Duncan McIntosh from France wrote: "if anybody has been there, seen it or done it, it's you.
South Africa's best-ever president.
Happy birthday, Nelson.
" Mandela served 26 years under South Africa's apartheid regime jail for his liberation struggle.
He was freed in 1990 and won the country's post-apartheid all-race polls as President in 1994, and retired after a term in office.

16 july 2003 10:59:00

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