New Africa Books, 2012
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New Africa Books
1st Floor, 6 Spin Street, Cape Town 8001
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From Robben Island to Bishop's Court:
The Biography of Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane
Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane holds a pivotal place in the history of South Africa. As a childhood friend of Chris Hani and inspired by the thinking of Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe, he became a political activist in the liberation struggle against apartheid. Preceding Nelson Mandela to Robben Island, he was in fact one of the prisoners responsible for building Mandiba’s prison cell. Once released from ‘the island’ he became a champion of the poor and oppressed - speaking out against segregation, fighting for the rights of HIV positive people, and acknowledging the equal role of women in society. He succeeded Desmond Tutu as Archbishop of Cape Town and was responsible for the implementation of the division of the Cape Town Diocese, something that had thwarted many before him. During his eleven years residence in Bishopscourt, Archbishop Njongo, as he was affectionately known, was a bridge-builder linking divergent views and a catalyst for change.
"In these times when role models are scarce and leaders are often found lacking in principles, wanting in morals and exhibiting greed and self aggrandizement rather than acceptable or even rudimentary standards, Ndungane’s humility and mission of compassion and service is in itself cause for joyous celebration, his humble beginnings, unwavering faith, even when sorely tested, his uncommon passion for all life, a beacon to many, especially those who find themselves on the receiving end of racism, bigotry, and discrimination. His ministry will be remembered for his championing of the poorest of the poor, the ostracized and the despised, the neglected, dispirited and out and out rejected. His Grace is a feminist par excellence."
— Literary critic Gorry Bowes Taylor
Copyright © 2014 Sindiwe Magona