Nelson Mandela was a south African anti-apartheid revolutionary and politician. Arrested in 1962, he was sentenced to life imprisonment after being convicted on charges of conspiracy to overthrow the state. He would spend there next twenty seven years behind bars. An international campaign to see him freed was successful when the last head of state F. W. De Klerk released him from Victor Verster prison in 1990. The two men would join forces to see the first multiracial and democratic elections in the country in 1994, resulting in Mandela leading the ANC to victory and his election as the first black South African president. He passed away in December 2013.
"The wind of change is blowing through this continent. Whether we like it or not, this growth of national conciousness is a political fact."
The first wave of Western European colonisation of the African continent began in the 15th century. The end result of the 'Scramble for Africa' meant that by 1914, only Ethopia and Liberia remained independent of European rule. Britain, France, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Russia and the Netherlands had all lay claim to African soils. Many African colonies helped support the allies in WW2. After the war, African nationalism and the desire for self-determination was on the rise. During 1950's and 60's the British Empire's days were numbered and so began the process of decolonisation. Howard Mac Milligan was Britain's Prime Minister when he made a tour of South Africa in 1960. His speech in Cape Town about the future direction of the continent and Great Britain's involvement were welcomed by some and considered duplicitous by others.