There are few names in the history of Africa, and specifically South Africa, that command an immediate sense of respect. OR Tambo is one of those names. A humble man, whom in his own words, would have preferred to go into ministry but alas God would rather have had him fight the good fight of liberating South Africa from the tyranny of apartheid. As I reflect on his life and what ultimately drove him, a bit of fear sets in as I wonder what drives me? Can I share the same passion that he had for South Africa, am I willing to lay down my life for my country? The one thing that I have noticed is that any talk of purpose must have people at its core. If a man is to achieve anything of significance in this world, the monuments will undoubtedly be the lives of people changed. Our freedom today is a monument for those that dedicated their lives to building it. His story provides the fuel that should ignite each and every one of us to burn with an intense desire to see lives changed for the better.
An extract from the book – OR Tambo Remembered. Nelson Mandela spoke at OR’s funeral and described him as ” A great giant who strode the globe like a colossus”.
I cannot help but notice as I reflect and contrast our current leaders with the likes of Oliver – that there exists a chasm. His selflessness, devotion and willingness to sacrifice his life for the attainment of freedom is really a mystery. I fully agree with Mandela as he says, few will know what was in his essence that made devote his life to such as cause. He goes on to say having heard that call, you did not hesitate to act! Therein lies the difference between the good and extraordinary – he did not hesitate to act!