06 December 2013 - Geneva - The Stop TB Partnership today joins the many people and organizations from around the world honouring the life of Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s former President and anti-apartheid campaigner.
Mr Mandela led South Africa's transition from white-minority rule in the 1990s and was elected President in 1994. Despite being imprisoned for 27 years because of his political activities, during which time he became ill with tuberculosis (TB), he was a tireless advocate for reconciliation, insisting on forgiveness and humanity over bitterness and resentment.
Mr Mandela devoted much of his time to campaigning for people living with TB and HIV, urging world leaders to step up their responses to the two diseases. With his death, we lose a great champion for TB and HIV. In 2004 he told the International AIDS Conference: "We can't fight AIDS unless we do much more to fight TB as well."
Our deepest sympathies and heartfelt condolences are with the Mandela family and friends at this time. As the TB community celebrates the life of a truly transformative leader, we remember him through his own inspiring words:
"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead."