THIS IS THE speech that Nelson Mandela gave at Dublin’s Mansion House in the summer of 1990 on the occasion of him accepting the freedom of the city.
Released from prison just months earlier, Mandela came to Ireland on one of his first foreign trips and was able to accept the freedom of Dublin two years after being awarded it in absentia.
The future South African president made reference to the Irish soccer team in his handwritten notes on the speech coming as it did on the day – 1 July 1990 – that Jackie’s Army returned from their Italia 90 adventure.
The speech has been published on the excellent Irish Election Literature website which says that it was left on the podium after Mandela spoke and came from an anonymous sender in an envelope that it had been kept in for the last 23 years:
Madiba: The last official portrait
Read: ‘We are in struggle because we value life and love all humanity’: Mandela’s address to the Dáil