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Nelson Mandela’s Legacy: Aspirations and Reflections on Soweto’s Vilakazi Street

Soweto’s Vilakazi Street remains a symbol of Nelson Mandela’s indelible mark on South Africa, drawing tourists from around the world to witness the iconic home where the anti-apartheid hero once lived.

However, a decade after Mandela’s passing, some local residents express a sense of disappointment, feeling that the promises of change and progress associated with Mandela’s legacy have not fully materialized.

Prosper Nkosi, a local resident, shares his sentiments, saying, “We love what he has done, we love the freedom that he has given us. I just wish that his legacy could continue. This place hasn’t changed, 10 years from now we still haven’t changed much. I wish things could just improve, better up this place.”

Vilakazi Street, known for being the only street globally where two Nobel laureates, Mandela and Desmond Tutu, once resided, serves as a living tribute to the struggles and triumphs of South Africa’s journey towards democracy. Mandela’s house, meticulously preserved, stands as a tangible link to the nation’s historic fight against apartheid.

As South Africa approaches a legislative election, coinciding with the 30th anniversary of the country’s first democratic vote, there is a pressing challenge of voter engagement. Despite the historical significance of Mandela’s legacy, authorities are grappling with declining voter numbers, a trend observed since the inaugural democratic election in 1994.

Yavela Dingilizwe, another resident from Johannesburg, reflects on the impact of Mandela’s legacy on the younger generation. He believes that the new generation, unburdened by the traumas of the past, can bring a fresh perspective to politics. “Old people are still affected by the things that happened in the past. So the new generation is going to come up with a new mindset and fresh outlook,” Dingilizwe expresses, drawing parallels to Mandela’s entry into politics as a young activist.

Source : Africa News