Courtesy of RT.com
On the eve of the Russia-Africa Summit, Ndileka Mandela sat down with RT’s Moussa Ibrahim to explain why the continent needs leaders of her grandfather’s stature now more than ever.
Asked why a continent so rich in minerals, resources, and young workers could still find its wealth stripped by foreign interests, Mandela gave a harsh response.
“Africa is rich,” she replied. “What’s stopping us is the leaders that we are choosing. Instead of choosing leaders according to rhetoric, we need to choose leaders who mimic the same value system of you and I.”
Nelson Mandela’s pan-African vision, his humility, and his willingness to listen to advice from heads of state down to tribal councils made him the embodiment of such a leader, she said. For Ndileka Mandela, passing her grandfather’s message on to younger generations is key to reclaiming sovereignty from the multitude of foreign corporations and international institutions that control Africa’s resources and economies.
“Who allowed the Western powers to have control? It is us,” she told Ibrahim. “It is the weakness in the continent,” she continued, adding that Africans need to “start believing in ourselves and our own sovereignty.”
The path to sovereignty also involves setting an independent foreign policy. Mandela described the Russia-Africa Summit, which begins in St. Petersburg on Friday, as an opportunity to discuss closer partnership with one of the leading powers of the BRICS bloc. Despite discouragement from the US, some 49 delegations are expected to attend the conference, and dozens of bilateral deals on economic development, counter-terrorism, and food security are expected to be signed, Russian ambassador-at-large Oleg Ozerov stated on Tuesday.
Watch Mandela’s full interview to learn how she plans on involving African youths in politics, who she considers the most impactful African leaders, and the political lessons she learned from her grandfather.