Babalwa Mhlauli

Lovelight flower Babalwa


"Ordinary people can do extraordinary things. That's what this campaign is all about." Pres Obama





Master of Ceremonies,


Our dear Adelaide, Thembi, Dali, Tselane and the rest of the Tambo family,


Your Majesties,


Esteemed international dignitaries,


Fellow mourners,




A great giant who strode the globe like a colossus has fallen.


A mind whose thoughts have opened the doors to our liberty has ceased to function.


A heart whose dreams gave hope to the despised has for ever lost its beat.


The gentle voice whose measured words of reason shook the thrones of tyrants has been silenced. Peoples of the world!


Here lies before you the body of a man who is tied to me by an umbilical cord which cannot be broken.


We say he has departed. But can we allow him to depart while we live!


Can we say Oliver Tambo is no more, while we walk this solid earth!


Oliver lived not because he could breathe.


He lived not because blood flowed through his veins.


Oliver lived not because he did all the things that all of us as ordinary men and women do.


Oliver lived because he had surrendered his very being to the people.


He lived because his very being embodied love, an idea, a hope, an aspiration, a vision.


While he lived, our minds would never quite formulate the thought that this man is other than what the naked eye could see.


We could sense it, but never crystallize the thought that with us was one of the few people who inhabited our own human environment, who could be described as the jewel in our crown.


I say that Oliver Tambo has not died, because the ideals for which he sacrificed his life can never die.


I say that Oliver Tambo has not died because the ideals of freedom, human dignity and a colour-blind respect for every individual cannot perish.


I say he has not died because there are many of us who became part of his soul and therefore willingly entered into a conspiracy with him, for the victory of his cause.


While the ANC lives, Oliver Tambo cannot die!


While Umkhonto we Sizwe exists, Oliver Tambo cannot die!


Oliver Tambo cannot die while his allies in the South African Communist Party and the Congress of South African Trade Unions remain loyal to the common purpose.


O.R. cannot cease to be, while the millions of our people gather themselves into the democratic organisations that make up our own rainbow coalition.


O.R. cannot be consigned to the past, while those who are with us today from the rest of the world remain as they have been, opponents of the apartheid crime against humanity, proponents of the common vision of justice and peace, defenders of the right of the child, the man, the woman and the beast of the forest to live, to be free and to prosper.


We all know many who have killed in defence of oppression. But we also know that some of these have themselves been victims of oppression.


We know that black and white, across the globe – the Pole, the Greek, the Ethiopian, the Cuban, the Brazilian and the Eritrean, people of all nationalities, are all united in their opposition to apartheid and injustice.


While these exist, Oliver Tambo cannot perish.


Let he or she who dares, stand up and tell us that it will happen that, while humanity survives, it will come to pass that O.R. Tambo will cease to be.


All tyrants, whatever their colour and their shape and their garments, come today and are gone tomorrow. The people, the victims of their tyranny, live on.


All tyrannical systems, whatever the name they give themselves – nazism, colonialism, apartheid, racism are some of their names – all, without exception, come today and tomorrow are no more than a bad memory.


The opponents of tyranny -


the South African, Oliver Tambo,


the South African, Chris Hani,


the South African, Albert Luthuli,


the Indian. Indira Gandhi,


the Indian, Rajiv Gandhi,


the Grenadian, Maurice Bishop,


the Zimbabweans, Herbert Chitepo, Jason Moyo and Josiah Tongogara,


the Mozambican, Samora Machel,


the Swede. Olof Palme,


the Americans, Martin Luther King Jr, John F. Kennedy and Malcolm X,


the Angolan, Aghostino Neto,


the Guinean. Amilcar Cabral,


the Nigerian, Murtala Mohamed,


the Chilean, Salvador Allende,


the Ghanaian, Kwame Nkrumah,


the Egyptian, Abdul Gamal Nasser,


the Motswana, Seretse Khama,


the Swazi, King Sobhuza II,


the woman, the man, the son, the daughter, the unknown soldier, the nameless heroes and heroines for whom no songs of praise are sung


all of them continue, still, to speak to us because they live.


Dear brother:


You set yourself a task which only the brave would dare. Somewhere in the mystery of your essence, you heard the call that you must devote your life to the creation of a new South African nation.


And having heard that call, you did not hesitate to act.


It may be that all of us – your dear wife, Adelaide, your children, those of us who are proud to count ourselves among your friends, your closest comrades – it may be that all of us will never be able to discover what it was in your essence which convinced you that you, and us, could, by our conscious and deliberate actions, so heal our fractured society that out of the terrible heritage, there could be born a nation.


All humanity knows what you had to do to create the conditions for all of us to reach this glorious end.


The are many who did not understand that to heal we had to lance the boil.


There are many who still do not understand that the obedient silence of the enslaved is not the reward of Peace which is our due.


There are some who cannot comprehend that the right to rebellion against tyranny is the very guarantee of the permanence of freedom.


We demand answers from all those who have set themselves up as your critics, but still dare to call themselves democrats.


We want to know – if life itself was threatened, as apartheid threatened the very existence of those who are black, was it not imperative that everything be done to end apartheid~ and if necessary by force of arms!


We want to know – if a crime against humanity was being perpetrated, as did the apartheid system, was it not necessary to ensure that the criminals were isolated and quarantined, and if necessary by the imposition of sanctions!


We want to know – if a social system was established whose central pillars were racial oppression and exploitation, such as the apartheid system was, would it not be correct that such a system be rendered unworkable and such a society ungovernable!


We want to know – when powerful, arrogant and brutal men deliberately close their ears to reason, and reply to the petitions of the dispossessed with the thunder of the guns, the crack of the whip and the rattle of the jail keys, is it not right to bring down the walls of Jericho!


Dear brother, dear friend, dear comrade:


You did all this and continued to maintain tolerance for your detractors and a healthy scorn for your enemies.


Today we stand watching the dawn of a new day.


We can see that we have it in our power to remake South Africa into what you wanted it to be – free, just, prosperous, at peace with itself and with the world.


Let all who value peace say together – long live Oliver Tambo!


Let all who love freedom say together – long live Oliver Tambo!


Let all who uphold the dignity of all human beings say together – long live Oliver Tambo!


Let all who stand for friendship among the peoples say together – long live Oliver Tambo!


Let all of us who live say that while we live, the ideals for which Oliver Tambo lived, sacrificed and died will not die!


Let all of us who live, say that while we live, Oliver Tambo will not die!


May he, for his part, rest in peace.


Go well, my brother and farewell, dear friend.


As you instructed, we will bring peace to our tormented land.


As you directed, we will bring freedom to the oppressed and liberation to the oppressor.


As you strived, we will restore the dignity of the dehumanised.


As you commanded, we will defend the option of a peaceful resolution of our problems.


As you prayed, we will respond to the cries of the wretched of the earth. As you loved them, we will, always, stretch out a hand of endearment to those who are your flesh and blood.


In all this, we will not fail you.


Dear Father Oliver


I weep as I read this speech by Grandpa Mandela to you grandpa!

A heartfelt rendition of unconditional love

An unending prayer of pure love

For before there ever was anything

There was Light

There was Love

There was day

There was night

There stood the garden of opulence

Golden, delicious, peaceful

Then Eve was created from Adam

A perfect companion

The beginning of the Human Race

Commanded to;


"Prosper! Reproduce! Fill Earth! Take charge! Genesis


Reading this speech Super Fathers

Takes me to the heart, Soul and Spirit the Almighty

See God always, always had pure intentions

The golden seal for all time to come

The foundation of all things good, super fine and glorious

Your lives transport each and everyone of us to the Spirit of God

The King of Israel who's presence can never be dimmed by anything whatsoever

The savior

God Holy, Superb and Majestic in His Throne of Splendor

The ruler who doesn't dose or sleep

The ruler who rules from sunset to sunrise

The ruler who is the Light

The Majestic King who's name is Love

The mighty one who says;


"The sun shall be no more your light by day;

Nor for brightness shall the moon give you light;

But the Lord will be your everlasting light and your God will be your glory.

Your sun shall no more go down;

Nor your moon withdraw itself

For the Lord will be your everlasting light and your days of mourning shall be ended.

Your people shall all be righteous;

They shall possess the land forever,

The branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I might be glorified." Isaiah


Dear Fathers you take me to the soul of the Most High God.

God who rejoices over us with gladness;

God who quiets us by his love;

God who exults over us with loud singing. Zephaniah


What is required of us is very simple and much easier compared to your sacrifices.


South Africa is a wealthy country, but as long as we have men and women who choose to be corrupt and incompetent, the country's wealth will diminish. In 2011 at the official opening of Cradock Four Heritage Site I met the Arts and Culture Minister who was highly impressed with my work, who loved my performance. He asked me to give my profile to one of his assistants so that his department could assist me. The assistant scheduled a meeting for me in parliament, but everything fizzled in thin air. Fortunately God had another plans. God made it possible for me to see the former Deputy President who was also extremely impressed with my contribution to Arts and Culture. He was eager and positive and immediately called the minister of Arts and Culture. I was called and given a date for a meeting with the Minister and his staff. That meeting was really good, it was in alignment with what I had hoped for, but it soon turned sour and I walked away. I hate wasting precious resources. I've always known that when the desire to do good is missing, nothing whatsoever will work out and this is the reason there is no longevity in some businesses that are sponsored by government.


Mrs. Coretta Scott-King, First Lady of the Civil Rights Movement says;

"We must make our hearts instruments of peace and nonviolence because when the heart is right, the mind and the body will follow."


Noone crystallizes my experiences better than Dr. Ann Dunham. When I read the following paragraphs, I felt redeemed, I felt a sense of oneness and peace with heaven and earth. God is the Master who explodes!


It is written;


"Having been a weaver, Dunham was interested in village industries, and she therefore moved to Yogyakarta, the center of Javanese handicrafts. In 1992 she earned a Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Hawaii, under the supervision of Prof. Alice Dewey, with a dissertation titled Peasant blacksmithing in Indonesia: surviving and thriving against all odds. Anthropologist Michael Dove described the dissertation as "a classic, in-depth, on-the-ground anthropological study of a 1,200-year-old industry". Dunham's paper challenged popular perceptions regarding economically and politically marginalized groups, and countered the notions that the roots of poverty lie with the poor themselves and that cultural differences are responsible for the gap between less-developed countries and the industrialized West.


According to Dove,

Dunham, found that the villagers she studied in Central Java had many of the same economic needs, beliefs and aspirations as the most capitalist of Westerners. Village craftsmen were "keenly interested in profits," she wrote, and entrepreneurship was “in plentiful supply in rural Indonesia,” having been “part of the traditional culture” there for a millennium…Based on these observations, Dr. Soetoro concluded that underdevelopment in these communities resulted from a scarcity of capital, the allocation of which was a matter of politics, not culture. Antipoverty programs that ignored this reality had the potential, perversely, of exacerbating inequality because they would only reinforce the power of elites. As she wrote in her dissertation, "many government programs inadvertently foster stratification by channeling resources through village officials," who then used the money to further strengthen their own status.


Dunham then pursued a career in rural development championing women’s work and microcredit for the world’s poor, with Indonesia’s oldest bank, the United States Agency for International Development, the Ford Foundation, Women's World Banking, and as a consultant in Lahore, Pakistan. While at the Ford Foundation she developed a model of microfinance which is now the standard in Indonesia, a country that is a world leader in micro-credit systems. Peter Geithner, father of Tim Geithner (who later became United States Secretary of the Treasury in her son's administration), was head of the foundation's Asia grant-making at that time. Dunham also worked with leaders from organizations supporting Indonesian human rights, women's rights, and grass-roots development."


This proves that one person can become the light for many. One person can change the lives of many. Integrity is key if we want to see true change. My grandfather Jim was one of the true masters of integrity and truth. This is a man who wasn't afraid to apologize to his children and grandchildren when he was wrong. This is a man who had no ego or pride whatsoever. This is a man who recognized and respected the rights of every human being, young and old. This is one of the reasons we loved him so dearly and respected him a great deal, because he respected us. When I graduated from high school I told my grandfather that I wanted to go to college far from home(Cape Town) to the city of bright lights and fast life and I explained to him that when one travels, when one isn't afraid to explore, one grows and becomes expanded.


My grandfather said;

"Yes, yes, my child you right!"

Ha ha ha! I thought yes, yes, yes mission complete, because my grandfather will now convince my mother that I'm right when I finally speak to her.


I wait for mother to be in the same room as my grandpa, so I tell her that I think its a good idea for me to attend University or College in Gauteng. Before I could even finish my highly polished speech, spoken with such confidence, I'm silenced by her shock. Asking me if I know Gauteng at all and who on earth do I think I am at my age to go to that place. (See, Gauteng was like New York, too much was happening and it wasn't the ideal place for a young girl who would be alone.)


The most surprising thing came from my grandfather. He was now on my mother's side telling me how young I was. Ha ha ha!!!


Me and my cousin were so shocked, we just looked at him dumbfounded. As soon as mother left the room, I went straight to him and asked him why he didn't support me as he had earlier when mother wasn't around. He laughed, my cousin laughed too, so he says, if he didn't say anything mother was gonna be more enraged if she learnt that he gave me his blessings. The blessing remained!


God's Grace and Blessings to all.