Frankly Speaking ...
- Robert M. Franklin (Posted from Inanda, South Africa)
- As world attention focuses on Mandela's hospital, we decided to go back to an often overlooked community that is dear to him. It is called Inanda, 20km outside the coastal city of Durban It is sacred ground and layered with multiple histories of leadership development, and spiritual and economic uplift.
There are at least three reasons to know this place.
It is where Dr. John Dube, first president of the African National Congress lived and founded the Ohlange Institute, Mahatma Gandhi lived and built his Phoenix Settlement, and where Nelson Mandela deliberately came in 1994 to cast his vote in South Africa's first democratic election. Dube came to America to study at Oberlin College and was influenced by Booker T. Washington at Tuskegee Institute to teach a gospel of the "head, hand and heart" in promoting self reliance.
When Mandela voted in April 1994, he visited the gravesite of Dr. Dube and said, "I am here to report, Mr. President, that South Africa is now free."
Another piece of the Gandhi story is that scores of young students were present today learning about HIV-AIDS prevention. They will be the future leaders of this country. They are the children of Dube, Gandhi and Mandela.
The journey continues. Stay tuned.
- BLOG COMMENTS:
Name of sender: Jackie Jena - I love South Africa... So rich in history and culture!!!! Welcome to SA sir... Hope you are having a great time! Enjoying your posts!
Name of sender: Maria Gitin - Robert and Cheryl, It is very moving to know that you are there during Mandela's final days. Your sharing your photos and stories make all of us who honor him feel so much closer. Thank you for sharing.
Name of sender: Brendon - I was on campus yesterday and had a flash back thinking about how the students loved you Dr. Franklin, you got the type of ovation that President Obama received during the commencement proceedings. I brain stormed, what if you lead the alumni association (ATL or National). I hope in the future you would consider this. With the popularity you have among "Franklin Men" graduates and the charisma you command in general I think your leadership could make our alumni association the type of force that Ivy league schools boast. Just food for thought.