Barack Obama is set to make a rare speech in South Africa marking the legacy of anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela.

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The speech is timed to celebrate the 100th birthday of the late global human rights icon.

The former US president will call on young people around the world to work towards fairer societies highlighting Mr Mandela’s struggle for democracy and equal rights in South Africa.


It is one of the most high-profile addresses Mr Obama will have made since leaving office at the start of 2017. However, as has been the case with almost all of his public speeches, he is not expected to mention his successor in the White House, President Trump.

Mr. Obama is expected use the annual Nelson Mandela Lecture to highlight how Mr Mandela, a Nobel Peace Prize winner, kept up his campaign against apartheid or white minority rule, in spite of what appeared to be insurmountable odds. Mr Mandela was imprisoned for 27 years as part of his fight on charges of conspiring to overthrow the state, before emerging from Robben Island prison and going on to lead his nation.

Becoming South Africa’s first black president in 1994, Mr Mandela died in 2013 leaving behind a legacy of the power of reconciliation and diversity.

Mandela, who was released from prison in 1990 and became South Africa’s first black president four years later, died in 2013, leaving a powerful legacy of reconciliation and diversity along with a resistance to inequality, economic and otherwise.

The 44th President is visiting Kenya ahead of the speech, returning to land of his father for the first time since leaving the presidency.