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Oprah Winfrey Channels The Spirit Of Nelson Mandela At South Africa's Dignity of Women Conference

Oprah quoted one of Mandela's oft-sayings, "I never lose. I either win or learn."

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Right on the heels of Beyoncé's touching tribute to Nelson Mandela, another of America's most public figures is saluting the late icon as well: Oprah Winfrey. 

On Thursday, the media mogul presented the keynote speech for Is’thunzi Sabafazi (Dignity of Women) at the UJ Soweto Campus in Johannesburg, South Africa, the Sunday Times reports. The event was part of the larger Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100 celebration, which aims to fight poverty while celebrating the leader's 100th birthday. Winfrey paid tribute to the anti-apartheid revolutionary and touched on the fond memories she had spending time with him.

"I said to Mandela that one day I will build a school, and it will be a school for girls because I believe that women will save South Africa. We have just had our first doctor graduate," Winfrey said.



Winfrey also used Mandela's example to encourage young people in the crowd:

"I want to say a word to the young dreamers," she noted. "Mandela said a winner is a dreamer who never gives up. I say never give up. It is you who is going to bring about unprecedented innovation. Do not give up! Find a way."




Speaking from her experience, the OWN executive talked about the importance of telling your story and taking control of your narrative. 

"Tell your story. There is power in your story, no matter how devastating. There is not one thing that did not happen to you that did not also happen for you," she said.

Politician, activist and Mandela's widow, Graça Machel, praised Winfrey's appearance.

"I knew these celebrations would be totally incomplete if Oprah didn't grace us with her presence, her voice, her power," Machel said. "Oprah, we as South Africa, we as the world, will never have the time to thank you enough."

According to the Daily Mail, this most recent trip is Winfrey's 36th visit to South Africa. 

You can watch the full Is’thunzi Sabafazi conference below. 




Now, check these out: 

How The Black Twitter Diaspora Reclaimed Winnie Mandela's Legacy From Media's Biased Coverage Of Her Death

Former agent says CIA played role in Nelson Mandela's arrest

Oprah Speaks Out For The First Time Since Her Mother's Passing

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Tonja Renée Stidhum is a writer/director made of sugar and spice and everything rice. She has the uncanny ability to make a Disney reference and a double entendre in the same sentence.