Monday, April 20, 2009

Greetings from Winnie Mandela

"As with Machel, Nelson and I were together some time before love came. It wasn't love at first sight", she once said in a rare comment about their relationship. On this occasion she offers a further tiny insight into her marriage. Having earlier declared herself a feminist ("depending on how you define feminism") we were interested to know about Nelson's qualifications. For example, does he help with the housework at home?

Johannesburg: Nelson Mandela's 86th birthday was a family affair, bringing together his children and grandchildren - as well as his former and present wives. In contrast with Mandela's glitzy 85th birthday party here last year - an elaborate banquet which attracted some of the world's most famous politicians and celebrities -yesterday's celebration, held at his birthplace in Qunu, was low-key.

One of the most touching moments was when Madiba's present wife Gra├ža Machel and former wife Winnie Madikizela-Mandela hugged after helping him to cut his birthday cake. The presence of Madiba's former wife at the triple celebration - it also marked his sixth wedding anniversary with Machel and the "graduation" of his grandson Gaddafi from initiation school - was warmly welcomed by family members gathered for the occasion.

Mandela and Machel, who is 52, took their vows on Mandela's 80th birthday in a private, multidenominational ceremony at his presidential home in the affluent Johannesburg suburb of Houghton.

Before a small group of friends and senior politicians, Methodist Archbishop Mvume Dandala was assisted in the ceremony by Anglican Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu. Tutu had publicly pressured Mandela to wed Machel to set a moral example for the nation. During the ceremony, well-wishers from the surrounding community filled the usually quiet tree-lined street with traditional songs of praise.

South African vice-president Thabo Mbeki (left) is congratulated by Winnie Madikizela Mandela, former wife of president Nelson Mandela at an election party in Johannesburg on Thursday. — AP/PTI

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela (L), former wife of Nelson Mandela and head of the ANC Women's League in South Africa, chats with Zambia's First Lady Maureen Mwanawasa (R) at State House, March 8, 2008. Winnie is in Zambia on an invitation from the Press Freedom Committee of the Post to commemorate the International Women's Day.
Winnie was known for breaking traditions within Africa. She always greeted males and females with a "kiss". I am not talking about a kiss on the cheek, i am talking about a wet one on the lips. I never understood the reason why she kissed Mandela's currently wife on the lips. These two are way too comfortable! When Marcel stated this, "depending on how you define feminism" instantly, i thought about ways in which she could possibily define "feminism". Is she a closet lesbian? I mean, she did marry an 80 year old and she's beyond "cozy" with his ex-wife Winnie.

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