Biologists have honoured Mandela by naming a host of new discoveries after him.
These include the Stasimopus mandelai, a species of trapdoor spider; Singafrotypa mandela, an African orb-weaving spider; and the Mandelia micocomata, a seaslug living off South Africa’s coast.
In 1973 Leeds University’s cosmic ray group named the “Mandela particle” after him, which scientists believed could be a new fundamental particle 40 to 70 times the mass of a proton. The particle was later found not to exist. University clubbed together to give him a joint honorary doctorate.
According to the Telegraph, the SA embassy informed them he couldn’t make the ceremony. The university, meanwhile, said it was an honour to have him in the city. “It was amazing that he turned up in Leeds at all, and the whole event was enough to bring tears to our eyes,” a spokesman said.
Nelson and Winnie Mandela on his release from Victor Verster Prison on February 11, 1990.
An undated photo of Nelson Mandela in his boxing days.