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Madikizela-Mandela, Winnie (1934–)

Madikizela-Mandela, Winnie (1934–)

South African anti-apartheid activist. Name variations: Winnie Nomzamo Mandela; Winnie Mandela. Born Sept 26, 1934, in Pondoland, South Africa; m. Nelson Mandela (later president of South Africa), 1958 (div. 1996); children: 2.

Regarded as one of the foremost heroes of the anti-apartheid struggle, studied social science and worked as social worker at Baragwanath Hospital; received degree in international relations from University of Witwatersrand; participated in demonstrations and was arrested, imprisoned, and banned many times; became active in Women's League of African National Congress (ANC) and, after Nelson Mandela's imprisonment, was regarded as spokeswoman for ANC; was severely restricted, imprisoned for 12 months for breaking banning order, and rearrested several times on same charge; banned to town of Brandfort (1976); returned to live in Soweto (1986) and became embroiled in legal controversy over killing of child by her bodyguards; in new government, was appointed minister of arts, culture, science, and technology but dismissed following allegations of corruption; remained popular despite conviction of fraud and theft (2003). Awarded Third World Prize (1985).

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