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Nelson Mandela’s daughter Zoleka planning for her death

The granddaughter of South Africa’s most loved anti-apartheid icons Nelson and Winnie Mandela has shared her journey of survival, love, and addiction and has been an inspiration for many. Zoleka Mandela has never shied away from openly discussing her challenges with mental health and loss – often sharing intimate details about her life on her social media platforms to her more than 500 000 followers and in her book When Hope WhispersZoleka is a true example of ‘overcoming and winning is possible.


This year marks 11 years since the two-time cancer survivor, mom of six, author, artist, and alcohol and drug recovering addict was first diagnosed with cancer. She celebrates this milestone by starting her YouTube channel where she shares her journey. Zoleka was recently diagnosed with Terminal cancer – a cancer that can’t be cured or treated. Zoleka recently put up a poll on social media asking people what she should do with her eggs stored at the fertility clinic now that she is diagnosed with stage four terminal cancer.



In an interview with Phemelo Motene on the Point of View, a show on Kaya FM, Zoleka revealed that she is preparing for her death. She has met with her family, a lawyer, and a therapist to discuss what life will be like for her children after she dies.

“It will probably sound strange but, I am in my panic stages. I think I am blessed and fortunate enough to be in a position where I am in my planning stages. I am having conversations with my loved ones, lawyer, therapist and siblings to discuss what happens on the day and after I pass away.”

Zoleka says she is honest about how she feels;

“I have reinforcements that I know that tomorrow is another day. I have learned to really just be okay with my eventuality. I’m living to be okay with living despite an expected death. I am always evaluating various facets of my life, my relationships, priorities and goals. I am put in a place to actually have a say, especially with my kids as a single parent that looks after all my children.”

Zoleka says she also does not want to bother her siblings when she dies. In another interview, she said that the cancer is not only in her spinal cord but in her hip area and now the liver.

“There is a lot of pain, every day is different. The form of treatment is different, in this regard, they are doing a lot of trying to improve my quality of life by reducing pain. I do have fractured bones due to cancer.”


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