Zoleka Mandela: Nelson Mandela's granddaughter dies aged 43 following battle with cancer

Zoleka Mandela, the granddaughter of Nelson Mandela, has died aged 43. (Credit: Getty Images)Zoleka Mandela, the granddaughter of Nelson Mandela, has died aged 43. (Credit: Getty Images)
Zoleka Mandela, the granddaughter of Nelson Mandela, has died aged 43. (Credit: Getty Images) | AFP via Getty Images
A spokesperson for the Nelson family confirmed that she passed away on Monday evening

Zoleka Mandela, the granddaughter of the first democratically elected South African president Nelson Mandela, has died aged 43 her family has confirmed.

Ms Mandela passed away on Monday evening (25 September) surrounded by friends and family at her home in South Africa. In recent years, Ms Mandela has spoken out about her treatment for cancer.

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A statement from the Nelson Mandela Foundation said: "We mourn the loss of a beloved grandchild of Mum Winnie and Madiba [Mandela].

"Her work in raising awareness about cancer prevention and her unwavering commitment to breaking down the stigma surrounding the disease will continue to inspire us all.' 

In 2011, Ms Mandela was first treated for breast cancer which was successfully put into remission before returning 2016. Following a turn for the worst last year, Ms Mandela confirmed that the cancer had spread to her liver and lungs before spreading to other organs.

Ms Mandela was open about her battle with drug addiction and depression. She had also spoken openly about the fact she had been sexually assaulted as a child.

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She was the youngest child of Nelson Mandela's daughter Zindzi Mandela and her first husband Zwelibanzi Hlongwane. Ms Mandela had six children, four of which survives her.

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The writer spoke openly of her heartbreak after her 13-year-old daughter was killed in a car accident in 2010. She also lost a son who was born prematurely in 2011.

As the granddaughter of the anti-apartheid activist Nelson Mandela, for the first 10 years of her life she only knew her grandfather as an incarcerated man. He was released from prison in 1990 after 27 years of detention.

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