NATIONAL: (By Yasir Habib Khan)– In distinctive way to mark 95th birthday of Nelson Mandela, a book was launched titled, ” Thank you Madiba” costing around R500 with its availability in 10 different languages including French and Mandarin.
It has been written by a Mozambican businessman whose life was transformed by former President Nelson Mandela in connection with Mandela Day celebrations. Fifteen percent of the proceeds will go towards the Nelson Mandela Children’s hospital project.
Abilio Soeiro, who dropped out before finishing school met the former statesman 13 years ago. He decided to study again after Mandela told him not to be embarrassed by the desire to learn, no matter his age.
Seven years later, Soeiro emerged with a master’s degree in marketing.
Soeiro’s book recalls the time him and Madiba were friends and neighbours in Maputo. He says the entrance of Madiba into his life in the year 2000, changed everything. Soeiro was by then already an established businessman.
While Mandela would go to Mozambique to rest, it was not to be. He attracted a lot of attention whenever he was there especially when hosting functions.
Soeiro, who was a regular guest at those functions collected photographs and memorabilia. The outcome is an insight of Mandela’s influence on Mozambique’s social fabric and the Machel family(T(t(t.
Chairperson for the fund raising committee of the Nelson Mandela children’s hospital, Tito Mboweni says they grateful for any help they receive. Mboweni says they “hope South Africans wherever they are, can also see the role they can play in bringing Madiba’s dream of a children’s hospital into reality.”
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