Today, the 11th February, marks the 23rd anniversary of the release from prison of South African anti-apartheid campaigner Nelson Mandela in 1990. Mandela had been held in prison for 27 years. He was awarded the Freedom of the City of Dublin in September 1988, which, due to his then incarceration, was accepted on his behalf by Adelaide Tambo, wife of the then leader of the African National Congress (ANC).
Right: This photo shows Nelson Mandela accepting the Freedom of the City of Dublin from the then Lord Mayor, Sean Haughey, on the 1st July 1990, almost two years after it had been awarded to him. View larger version in our online Image Gallery.
Mandela was however able to send a message to the people of Dublin through his solicitor Mr. Ismail Ayob. It was the first such communication from Mandela to the outside world in twenty-six years. Mandela's message noted that he regarded the Irish 'as the original freedom fighters'. Read more »