Nelson Mandela’s ex-wife Winnie left out of legendary anti-apartheid leader’s $4.1M will

Where and how did Winnie get it so wrong?

I grew up idolizing this lady, this icon, paragon of African beauty. Hers was a story that awed me with the wonder of her seemingly effortless courage. When Nelson Mandela was released from prison, I thought to myself, “yes! The best ending ever!” Sadly, it was not to be. Within a matter of years she had been replaced by Madam Graca Machel, widow of Mozambican President who now coasts on as the woman who saw this great man through his final years.

Still this particular act by Mandela leaves me cold. How deeply did she hurt him? He left money to his step kids and house-helps for Pete’s sake. The gesture is a little too harsh and unforgiving.

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Executor Dikgang  Moseneke said he is not aware of any challenges to the provisions of the will of  South Africa’s first black president, who died on Dec. 5 at age 95.

  By      / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

DNP;
JOHN PARKIN/APNelson Mandela and his ex-wife Winnie appear together in Durban, South  Africa, in 1991.

Nelson  Mandela sent a message from the grave to his former wife of 38 years on  Monday, leaving her completely out of his $4.1 million will, it was  announced.

Winnie arrives for a press statement at the house of her former husband in June.

Markus Schreiber/AP

Winnie arrives for a press statement  at the house of her former husband in June.

Executor Dikgang Moseneke read the bad news, at least as far as Winnie  Madikizela-Mandela is concerned, to members of Mandela’s family. Moseneke  said he is not aware of any challenges to the wishes of the legendary South  African anti-apartheid leader, who passed away in December at age 95.

The will was drawn up 10 years ago, but was revised in 2005 and 2008.

Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke (center) reads Nelson Mandela's will as he is flanked by Professor Njabulo Ndebele and Advocate George Bizos, Nelson Mandela's lawyer, confidant and friend.

SIPHIWE SIBEKO/REUTERS

Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke  (center) reads Nelson Mandela’s will as he is flanked by Professor Njabulo  Ndebele and Advocate George Bizos, Nelson Mandela’s lawyer, confidant and  friend.

“It went well,” Moseneke said at a press conference in Johannesburg. “There  were clarifications sought from time to time.”

Mandela’s widow, Graca Machel, made out much better than Winnie. Mandela’s  third wife has the right to half of the former South African president’s estate  if she claims it within three months.

Nelson Mandela and his wife Winnie wave from a Strasbourg's Town Hall balcony in 1990.

Christian Lutz/AP

Nelson Mandela and his wife Winnie  wave from a Strasbourg’s Town Hall balcony in 1990.

Mandela had already given $300,000 to his three surviving children, and his  grandchildren received anywhere from $9,000 to $300,000 each. The beneficiaries  include Machel’s two children with President Samora Machel, who died in a plane  crash in 1986.

Mandela gave $4,500 each to nine staff members, including his personal cook,  Xoliswa Ndoyiya.

Nelson Mandela and Winnie in their 1958 wedding picture. The couple met in 1957.

AFP/AFP/Getty Images

Nelson Mandela and Winnie in their  1958 wedding picture. The couple met in 1957.

“It shows me that he has been respecting me and he loved me for who I am,”  Ndoyiya said. “I am one of these people who served him for many years.”

Nelson Mandela and Winnie met in 1957 and were married one year later. They  separated before Nelson Mandela became president of South Africa in 1994 and the  divorce was finalized two years later. They had two daughters together.

Nelson and Winnie Mandela show off their first-born daughter, Zindzi, at their home in Orlando West, Soweto, in 1961.

ALF KHUMALO/AP

Nelson and Winnie Mandela show off  their first-born daughter, Zindzi, at their home in Orlando West, Soweto, in  1961.

The 77-year-old Winnie, famously known as “Mother of the Nation,” is a  strong activist in her own right. She was often tortured and imprisoned for her  own anti-apartheid views and passed on the message of her husband, who was in  prison for most of their marriage.

In his will, Mandela said he hoped some of his grandchildren would live in  his Johannesburg home, which would “also serve as a place of gathering of the  Mandela and Machel family in order to maintain its unity long after my  death.”

“He certainly worked hard throughout his life whether he was in jail or out  in order to gain the freedom of all of us in South Africa, to show to the world  at large that power should not be exercised for personal benefit but for the  benefit of all,” said George Bizos, one of the two other executors. “Many say  that they are following in his footsteps: Either they don’t know the road that  he followed or they sort of bluff themselves that they are following  it.”

Culled from nydailynews.com

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