Guildford Labour party has been remembering former South African anti-apartheid activist and President Nelson Mandela over the past few days.
Prospective Parliamentary Candidate Richard Wilson spoke to to BBC Radio Surrey about the impact the revolutionary leader had on his life:
Richard has added:
“All over the world people are coming to terms with the death of Nelson Mandela. I remember as an 11 year-old boy going to an Anti-Apartheid meeting, in a small flat, over 30 years ago. Mandela inspired millions of people at thousands of similar meetings across the globe but his release from prison seemed unthinkable, an impossible dream.
In 1990, he wasn’t just released, he went from being a political prisoner to the world’s foremost statesman to a heroic moral figure. The reason he became a hero to me and millions, or even billions, of others is that he lived his ideals. As a leader, but also as a man, he showed the power of forgiveness and compassion. He was victorious in the struggle against the oppressive apartheid system but he held no bitterness for his enemies. He united a divided nation and set an example to the world.
Nelson Mandela’s lifelong fight for freedom and equality inspires me as much now as it ever did. We have lost a visionary. We have lost a giant of our time. We have lost a hero.”