Writer Mandla Langa helps complete Madiba's sequel to 'A Long Walk to Freedom'

Writer and journalist, Mandla Langa has fulfilled the wishes of the former South African President, Nelson Mandela and his widow Graça Machel by co-authoring and publishing a full account of Mandela's tenure as President of South Africa through the newly released Dare Not Linger: The Presidential Years.

Langa made use of draft, notes and a wealth of archival material to complete the sequel to 'A Long Walk to Freedom'.

Langa says the book was left incomplete owing to Mandela's busy schedule and later his health taking a toll. He says the book went to the publishers in March 2016 and he picked it up in June, continuing off where Mandela had written close to 70 000 words.

It needed a write to contextualise it, to use archival material to make it live to make it readable adds Langa.

My role was to help complete it, in a sense that there were so many areas that still needed to be dealt with.

Mandla Langa, Journalist, author and writer

Langa explains that the archives, records from various sources, including Machel played an extensive role in piecing together the book.

Langa tells 702 host Azania Mosaka that writing the book was quite an enormous task as he had to tell the story of one of the world's most celebrated icons. It was a labour of love expresses Langa.

He stresses the need to note and take into consideration the era in which Mandela lead South Africa before a time when many began calling him a 'sell out'.

The choices that were made at the time were reflecting the realities of the time. I know that a lot of self-styled revolutionaries who are given to revisioning history would say that Madiba sold out or that generation sold out.

Mandla Langa, Journalist, author and writer

They should not wear today's lenses to look at yesterday. They use yesterday's eyes to look at what was happening then.

Mandla Langa, Journalist, author and writer

Langa goes on to say Mandela goes to great lengths to comment on the economic circumstances he found South Africa in.

We must not forget that South Africa was a wasteland, politically and economically - after the coffers at National Treasury were emptied out, says Langa adding that the country was operating on a huge deficit.

Graça Machel told me Madiba was always trying to gain consensus, even from people who were very difficult. In maintaining that consensus he really didn't want to humiliate some people, for example, FW. De Klerk. He always worked on the basis that those people represent constituencies and to humiliate them in public would be to humiliate those constituencies. But at the end of the day, he would chide them when they met.

Mandla Langa, Journalist, author and writer

Langa hopes people reading the book will walk away knowing that Mandela was a builder of a nation, someone who wanted South Africa to be a better country and return to its greatness.

Mandla Langa was born in 1950 in Durban, South Africa. After being arrested in 1976, he went into exile and has lived in Botswana, Mozambique and Angola, as well as Hungary, Zambia and the United Kingdom, where he was the ANC’s Cultural Representative. A writer and journalist, he was the first South African to be awarded the Arts Council of Great Britain bursary for creative writing and has been a columnist for the Sunday Independent and the New Nation. He is also the author of several acclaimed novels, including The Lost Colours of the Chameleon, which won the 2009 Commonwealth Prize for Best Book in the African Region.

Dare Not Linger: The Presidential Years by Nelson Mandela and Mandla Langa will be published in hardback, ebook and audio on 19th October 2017.

Mandla Langa's biography was provided by Pan Macmillan.

For more on the book by Mandla Langa and Nelson Mandela listen to clip below:


This article first appeared on 702 : Writer Mandla Langa helps complete Madiba's sequel to 'A Long Walk to Freedom'


CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
WATCH: Everyday I wake up feeling like a king, says Kwesta

WATCH: Everyday I wake up feeling like a king, says Kwesta

Award-winning rapper Kwesta performs some tracks from his album titled DaKAR II and talks about his success this year.

The time has come to free cannabis, says activist Gareth Prince

The time has come to free cannabis, says activist Gareth Prince

Rastafarian lawyer Gareth Prince has been advocating for the emancipation of cannabis in SA for 17 years. This is his journey.

Why organisers chose Constitution Hill for the AfroPunk festival

Why organisers chose Constitution Hill for the AfroPunk festival

Our values align with the South African Constitution, says founder of Afropunk Jocelyn Cooper.

6 SA female game-changers win Techwomen program in Silicon Valley

6 SA female game-changers win Techwomen program in Silicon Valley

The Techwomen initiative founded in the US, saw the South African team win 3000 US Dollars for their proposed project.

Everything you need to know about architectural history of the AmaZulu

Everything you need to know about architectural history of the AmaZulu

My co-author needed a partner to assist him with the IsiZulu part of his research says Director of Libraries at UKZN Joyce Myeza.

Why novelist James Baldwin deserves to be celebrated

Why novelist James Baldwin deserves to be celebrated

South African poet and writer Mandla Langa gives praise to legendary novelist, essayist and playwright James Baldwin.

Popular articles
Van Damme: De Lille has until Monday to respond to maladministration claims

Van Damme: De Lille has until Monday to respond to maladministration claims

The DA has suspended Patricia de Lille from party activities but Eusebius McKaiser says its statement 'is clear as mud'.

LISTEN: Father of drowned toddler speaks of dangers and heartbreak

LISTEN: Father of drowned toddler speaks of dangers and heartbreak

Connor Weber, fell unnoticed into a bin of water and drowned.

Fund manager lays criminal charges against former Steinhoff CEO Markus Jooste

Fund manager lays criminal charges against former Steinhoff CEO Markus Jooste

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Benguela Global Fund Managers Chief Investment Officer Zwelakhe Mnguni.

The Steinhoff Story: from humble beginnings to billions

The Steinhoff Story: from humble beginnings to billions

Financial Mail editor Rob Rose chats to Eusebius McKaiser about how Steinhoff became the retail giant we know, before the fall.

Zuma order to pay costs of failed legal suit, a damning indictment: Law expert

Zuma order to pay costs of failed legal suit, a damning indictment: Law expert

Law professor at Wits says the President has now been warned to consider his options very careful when playing delaying tactics.

Predictably awesome new Nando's ad reminds South Africans ‘we can fix our sh$t’

Predictably awesome new Nando's ad reminds South Africans ‘we can fix our sh$t’

Watch the Guptas pack their bags and run in Nando's inspiring new advertisement.

How businessman Max Lichaba struck gold with his jewellery company

How businessman Max Lichaba struck gold with his jewellery company

Entrepreneur Max Lichaba built his own empire and is the CEO of Lichaba Creations and several other businesses. This is his story.