'If needs be': The three words that saved Nelson Mandela

13 September 2020 - 00:00 By Nadine Dreyer

"During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die."

There was complete silence in the courtroom after Nelson Mandela uttered these famous words in the Palace of Justice in Pretoria on April 20 1964...

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