Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Nelson Mandela Casts His Ballot Two Days Ahead of the Rest of South Africa

From The Grio 
JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA - He looked older and frailer than many had remembered; his hair seemed to be a brighter shade of white. But the Mandela magic was still there; the sunny shirt, sunnier smile and enduring aura of the world's greatest political icon.
The video and images, released Monday, showed 92-year-old Nelson Mandela voting in municipal elections, two days ahead of the rest of the nation. He was photographed as a special ballot box was delivered to his Johannesburg mansion, so he didn't have to travel to a polling station. It was the first sighting of the 'The Father of the Nation' since he was admitted to the hospital with a respiratory illness in January.
Millions of South Africans were warmed by the images -- and, perhaps few more than the leaders of his party, the African National Congress (ANC). They stand to benefit from the publication of the pictures.
Some have even suggested that the event was part of a cynical attempt by politicians and bureaucrats to capitalize on the mystique of a frail, old man. "Is this any way to treat an icon?"asked one blogger. "Will the reporters and the politicians ever let him rest?" asked one of Mandela's neighbors as a crowd of journalists, officials and passers-by gathered at his home. "They're here to see 'the old man'. You can tell there's an election coming" remarked another.

No comments: