South Africa’s former President Nelson Mandela’s granddaughter Zoleka Mandela has died at the age of 43.
Zoleka died after being admitted to hospital on September 18, a statement from the family has confirmed.
She was being treated for cancer of the hip, liver, lung, pelvis, brain and spinal cord.
Zoleka was the granddaughter of Nelson Mandela’s second wife, Winnie, and was a campaigner on several issues, including cancer.
Following her tragic death, the Nelson Mandela Foundation praised her work as inspirational.
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The Foundation stated that Zoleka raised “awareness about cancer prevention” as well as “breaking down the stigma surrounding the disease”.
She was first diagnosed with breast cancer aged 32, before receiving treatment.
Zoleka was in remission, but the disease later returned.
Opening up about her health struggles, Zoleka wrote on Instagram last month: “What do I tell my children? How do I tell them that this time around I may not get to live my life as a survivor?
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“How do I tell them everything will be OK when it’s not? I’m dying… I don’t want to die.”
Zoleka was also very candid about her history of drug addiction and struggles with depression.
She also campaigned for better road safety after her 13-year-old daughter was heartbreakingly killed in a car accident in 2010.
Zoleka sadly later also lost a son who was born prematurely.
She is survived by her four children.
Ms Mandela bravely shared her story in her autobiography When Hope Whispers and spoke about her cancer diagnosis in various interviews.
She was was only 10-years-old when her grandfather was released from prison in 1990 after 27 years.
Mr Mandela died in 2013 at the age of 95.
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