Nelson Mandela International Day recognises contribution of ex-president of South Africa, an anti-apartheid icon

Posted 3 months ago

The birthday of revolutionary Nelson Mandela who fought against the apartheid in South Africa is celebrated as the Nelson Mandela International Day.

Born on 18 July in 1918, Mandela was the first democratically elected president of South Africa who worked to dismantle institutionalised racism.

Mandela started his political career in 1944 by joining the African National Congress. He joined ANC after he helped in the formation of the ANC Youth League (ANCYL). He became the National Volunteer-in-Chief of the Defiance Campaign in 1952.

Maulvi Cachalia was made the deputy of Mandela and the two launched civil disobedience. Mandela remained imprisoned for years but continued his struggle against the apartheid. He finally became the President of South Africa in 1994.

Nelson Mandela International Day History

The day was recognised by the United Nations in November 2009 to acknowledge the contribution of Mandela in promoting peace and freedom. The Nobel Peace Prize awardee was a revolutionary whose values were dedicated to the service of humanity.

Mandela was born on 18 July hence it is celebrated as the Nelson Mandela International Day. The resolution passed by the UN recognises the efforts of Mandela in promoting social justice across the world and his struggle for democracy.

In 2014 the United Nations General Assembly introduced the Nelson Mandela prize to recognise the achievements of those who dedicated their lives to the service of humanity, much like he had in his lifetime.

Nelson Mandela International Day Significance

The day inspires people to serve their communities and take responsibility towards changing the world. After the day was recognised in 2009, the UN also introduced Nelson Mandela Rules which honour the legacy of the former president who spent 27 years in jail.

The Nelson Mandela Rules are the Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners.