Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex attend the launch of the Nelson Mandela Centenary Exhibition, marking the 100th anniversary of anti-apartheid leader's birth.
Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex attend the launch of the Nelson Mandela Centenary Exhibition, marking the 100th anniversary of anti-apartheid leader's birth. Arthur Edwards/AAP

Meghan shines at Nelson Mandela tribute

MEGHAN Markle met Nelson Mandela's granddaughter as she and Prince Harry paid tribute to the anti-apartheid icon at an exhibition dedicated to his incredible life.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex looked at artwork and met special guests including Zamaswazi Dlamini-Mandela at the Southbank Centre in central London overnight.

Meghan looked classic in a blush-pink sleeveless trench coat and matching heels.

Ms Dlamini-Mandela, 39, a fashion designer and entrepreneur, shook hands and spoke with the Duchess, who looked radiant in a blush pink sleeveless jacket dress by House of Nonie teamed with matching nude court shoes.

MORE: Barack Obama delivers Donald Trump rebuke at Nelson Mandela birthday anniversary

Harry wore a grey suit as he attended the free exhibition depicting the life of Mr Mandela - who met Princess Diana during a private visit to South Africa in 1997 just months before her tragic death.

 

Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, meets Nelson Mandela's granddaughter Zamaswazi Diamini-Mandela at the launch of the Nelson Mandela Centenary Exhibition, marking the 100th anniversary of anti-apartheid leader's birth.
Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, meets Nelson Mandela's granddaughter Zamaswazi Diamini-Mandela at the launch of the Nelson Mandela Centenary Exhibition, marking the 100th anniversary of anti-apartheid leader's birth. Arthur Edwards/AAP

The exhibit, which opens to the public today, charts Mr Mandela's career from activist to president through six themes - character, comrade, leader, prisoner, negotiator and statesman.

It commemorates the hundredth year of his birth and is the first time the exhibition has been shown in the UK after successful runs around the world.

Harry and Meghan were due to meet guests including Thembi Tambo, South Africa's High Commissioner to the UK and daughter of anti-apartheid politician Oliver Tambo, who was a close colleague of Mr Mandela.

One of the items on display is a letter of thanks from the statesman to the British public written on April 16, 1990 - the day Mr Mandela attended the Wembley concert held in his honour.

In it, he thanks the British public for their "overwhelming generosity".

Other items include a Collected Works of Shakespeare, which was smuggled onto Robben Island and features annotations made by Mr Mandela and his contemporaries.

Leading former anti-apartheid campaigner Lord Peter Hain, who is chair of the Nelson Mandela Centenary Exhibition, welcomed the royal support.

He said: "The Mandela Centenary Exhibition at Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre, which is free to visitors from 17 July - 19 August, will depict the anti-apartheid freedom struggle and Mandela's vision of a non-racial rainbow democracy based upon justice, equality and human rights.

"We are delighted the duke and duchess will be supporting it."

Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, look at a Shakespeare book favoured by prisoners on Robben Island with Andrew Miangeni, who was in prison with Nelson Mandela, at the launch of the Nelson Mandela Centenary Exhibition, marking the 100th anniversary of anti-apartheid leader's birth.
Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, look at a Shakespeare book favoured by prisoners on Robben Island with Andrew Miangeni, who was in prison with Nelson Mandela, at the launch of the Nelson Mandela Centenary Exhibition, marking the 100th anniversary of anti-apartheid leader's birth. Arthur Edwards/AAP

Prince Harry visited Mandela's cell where he spent 18 years imprisoned by the apartheid regime on a 2015 trip to South Africa's Robben Island.

He also toured the statesman's offices and met his widow, Graca Machel, on the same trip.

Also overnight, former US President Barack Obama paid tribute to Mandela in a speech to mark 100 years since the anti-apartheid icon's birth.

Mr Obama opened his speech in South Africa by saying that "each day's news cycle is bringing more head-spinning and disturbing headlines."

While not directly mentioning his successor, US President Donald Trump, Mr Obama's speech in South Africa countered many of Mr Trump's policies, rallying people to keep alive the ideas that Mandela worked for including democracy, diversity and good education for all.


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