FAMILY STATEMENT ON CTIA RENAMING INTO WINNIE MADIKIZELA MANDELA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT.
06 June 2018
We the family of Mama Winnie Nomzamo Madikizela-Mandela fully supports the renaming of Cape Town International Airport (CTIA) into Winnie Madikizela Mandela International Airport. We the biological children, Grand children and great grandchildren of Mama Winnie Madikizela Mandela believe that she deserves the honour from the people of South Africa, most of whom got to appreciate her contribution in the fight against apartheid immediately after she passed away in April 2018.
Primarily, Mama Nomzamo Winnie Madikizela Mandela fought for Freedom and during the repressive years of apartheid, she recurrently used CTIA whilst visiting former President Nelson Mandela. The Airport because one of the most important symbols of the connection of struggles of ordinary people in the ground and the exiled political leadership.
Of significance is that one of the turning points in South Africa’s struggle for all inclusive participatory democracy was when Mama Nomzamo Winnie Madikizela Mandela confronted apartheid Minister of Justice Koebie Coetzee in a plane destined for CTIA. It was primarily a trip to CTIA that kickstarted the negotiations to end apartheid and the centre of that was Mama Nomzamo Winnie Madikizela Mandela.
When we addressed the official funeral of our Mother, Mama Nomzamo Winnie Madikizela Mandela we highlighted the fact that she was vilified for most part of her life mostly because she is a woman, whilst her male counterparts were praised despite their difficult past. It our firm believe that the South African story of freedom and liberation should not be reduced into a story of males only. Women played an important role in the political liberation of South Africa, and our Mother, Grand Mother is a representation of South African women’s struggle against apartheid.
We therefore submit emphatically that the greatest honour to give to Mama Nomzamo Winnie Madikizela Mandela would be to rename Cape Town International Airport after her and all women who fought against apartheid. We know that she personally never sought personal glorification, yet renaming an airport of CTIA’s stature will be a great inspiration to many generations of female freedom fighters here in South Africa and abroad.
ISSUED BY THE FAMILY OF MAMA NOMZAMO WINNIE MADIKIZELA MANDELA