Photo: Peru Continues to Honor Nelson Mandela
For the last two years, July 18 has been Nelson Mandela Day. The UN adopted it as a day for global humanitarian action and called it Nelson Mandela International Day. This was the first time the body had set apart a world day in honor of one person, and they chose to make the annual celebration occur on the leader’s birthday.
During this day, every one is asked to give at least 67 minutes of their time to serve their community or perform some kind of other humanitarian act in remembrance of the once-South African president who, for 67 years, has dedicated himself to the fight for social justice.
In San Isidro, Peru, there sits a gold-colored statue of a smiling Mandela standing at a podium. It is said that very few in Peru are unaware of the South African leader’s fight against apartheid.
One South African writer recounted meeting the people of Lima, and finding that when they learned she was from the same country as the amazing Nelson Mandela.
“It seems every taxi driver in Lima knows about Nelson Mandela, the man who showed such forgiveness and lack of bitterness after leading the struggle to replace the apartheid regime of South Africa with a multi-racial democracy,” wrote writer Marie Meyer.
“His amazing life story is known to many Peruvians I meet, and many marvel at how he emerged from his jail cell to become South Africa’s first black president, and a Nobel Peace Prize-winner in 1993.”