The writer was devastated, to say the least by the death of her first daughter who would have been 23 years old this year, and has expressed how there is not a single day that passes without the thought of her Zenina crossing her mind.
Zoleka is now commemorating a decade since her daughter’s death by appealing to the public to join and support her efforts in assuring the safety and protection of children from drunken drivers is taken seriously by our leaders.
“In memory of my daughter, Zenani Mandela, who was killed by a drunk driver, hours after her 13th birthday in 2010. This year, she would have celebrated her 23rd birthday. Today, and everyday, I remember. I call for your support, to protect the lives of our innocent children. I urge you to please join me and demand more action from our leaders” she wrote.
Zenani Mandela passed on, on the day of her 13th birthday on the way home from a pre-tournament concert in Soweto where the likes of award-winning pop singer Shakira, the Black Eyed Peas, and more had performed for the first time in South Africa.
Mzansi mourned with the Mandela family during their painful loss which leads to the late Nelson Mandela missing the attendance of the football World Cup opening ceremony, after the death of his great-granddaughter in the accident.
Zenani, who celebrated her 13th birthday on 9 June 2010 was the only victim who died in the crash and was one of Nelson Mandela’s great-grandchildren.
After her opening up about her downward spiral of alcohol and drug abuse, Zoleka has risen above her past and is now a woman on a mission with a Psychology Degree and has established herself as a designer for her latest Mandela Shoes Venture.