Speakers’ comments on Nelson Mandela’s death, including a quote from Mandela himself

Nelson MandelaI’m sure there will be lots of blog posts being written around the world right now about the greatness of Nelson Mandela’s speeches and so I thought I’d publish something a little different.

Below is a collection of some of the great speech quotes that have been generated today by figures around the world reflecting on Mandela’s death. It’s wonderful to see so many speakers in agreement on one topic and delivering inspirational, reflective lines that Mandela himself would of been proud of.

And it seems fitting to start with a comment on his own death by the great man himself.

Nelson Mandela comments on his own death:

Death is something inevitable. When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace. I believe I have made that effort and that is, therefore, why I will sleep for the eternity.”

(FROM AN INTERVIEW FOR THE DOCUMENTARY MANDELA, 1994)

Jacob Zuma, South African President:

Fellow South Africans, Nelson Mandela brought us together, and it is together that we will bid him farewell.”

David Cameron UK Prime Minister:

Your generosity, compassion and profound sense of forgiveness have given us all lessons to learn and live by.”

Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God”

One of the brightest lights of our world has gone out”

Barack Obama, President of the United States:

His journey from a prisoner to a president embodied the promise that human beings – and countries – can change for the better.”

A man who took history in his hands, and bent the arc of the moral universe toward justice.”

Mary Robinson Former Irish President:

Why are we so bereft? Because he was the best of us, the best of our values.”

Enda Kenny, Irish Taoiseach:

The boy from the Transkei has finished his long walk. His journey transformed not just South Africa, but humanity itself.”

Muhammad Ali, sporting great:

What I will remember most about Mr. Mandela is that he was a man whose heart, soul and spirit could not be contained or restrained by racial and economic injustices, metal bars or the burden of hate and revenge.”

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Rich Watts is the UK Business Speaker of the Year and a past JCI National Public Speaking champion. He setup and now runs Rich Public Speaking providing presentation skills and public speaking training.

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