Oprah offers rousing tribute to Mandela in S. Africa visit
Oprah Winfrey on Thursday delivered a rousing tribute to Nelson Mandela, a century after he was born, and urged the youth of South Africa and beyond to overcome failure and trauma on the road to accomplishing their goals.
“Your day will come. I applaud your resilience,” Winfrey told a cheering crowd in Soweto. “I say there’s no such thing as failure. Failure is just a mistake trying to move you in a better direction.”
The philanthropist and former talk show host, who opened an academy for girls in South Africa a decade ago, acknowledged the high unemployment, poverty and other social challenges persisting in the country that held its first all-race elections in 1994 after the end of white minority rule.
But Winfrey, who said she was visiting South Africa for the 36th time, told young people not to give up. “Because it is your fresh perspectives that are going to bring about unprecedented innovation for this country. We need you.”
The Nelson Mandela Foundation co-hosted the event, one of a series of activities honoring Mandela this year. The antiapartheid leader and South Africa’s first black president died in 2013 at age 95.
Oprah Winfrey pays tribute to Nelson Mandela at an event Thursday in Soweto, South Africa.