Member of the African National Congress National Executive Committee Lindiwe Sisulu says she is proud of the role her mother played in bringing democracy to South Africa. Sisulu has also encouraged members of the ANC to unite and continue in the spirit of the late struggle icons who fought for freedom.

Mama Albertina Sisulu‘s centenary celebrations have been taking place in Orlando West, Soweto.

A ceremony was held at Shanty Clinic, one of the oldest health facilities in Soweto, where Mama Sisulu used to work.

The Holy Cross Anglican Church pre-school was also renovated in Mama Sisulu’s honour.

Lindiwe Sisulu says all struggle icons displayed unity and encouraged the country’s leadership to follow in their footsteps.

“I’m very proud of the role she has played. She was not an individual in the liberation struggle. All of us have to stand together in solidarity like they did together with Ma Greta Ncapayi, together with Ma Ruth, together with Ma Winnie Mandela. These were a formidable group of women that really had taken on the might of the apartheid state and succeeded which is why we have the democracy we have, because they were a solid organisation. I hope she is smiling wherever she is.”

Sisulu described her mother as a mother to many kids, even those who were not biologically hers. The late struggle stalwart Albertina Sisulu was born in Tsomo in the Eastern Cape in 1918. This Sunday, she would be turning 100 years old.

“She had a humour in her as well, which didn’t come out very often because she was so single-mindedly committed to the struggle. But what I learned from her is her determination. She was never going to be bowed by anybody despite everything that she encountered in her life. She remained steadfast, very determined and even more determined to make sure her children will grow up in this particular struggle.”

ANC members also share fond memories of Ma Sisulu. 80-year-old Magdalene Jacobs says struggle icons like Albertina Sisulu taught them respect.

“Where we are today is through people like uMama u-Nontsikelelo and the others, u-Getty Gertrude Shope, Mama Winnie; I can call them all. Those are the people … I was still very young, I worked with them. They taught us respect and to care for each other.”

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