It would take an entire book (or several books) to describe all the
famous people of Africa. Below you will see a list of many of these
personalities followed by a description of them. Some of the people
listed are from the past and some are still alive. The list includes
presidents, religious leaders, warriors, and kings.
List of famous people of Africa
Shaka (Zulu King)
Cetewayo (Zulu King)
Of all the famous people of Africa perhaps Nelson Mandela is the most
known. This great leader helped free his nation from apartheid. He was
born in the South African town of Transkei in 1918. Outraged when the
National Party which supported racism came to power in South Africa he
became active in fighting for equal rights for all people in South
Africa. He founded the military wing of the African National Congress
which was involved in sabotaging government installations. He was put in
prison in 1990 and stayed there for twenty seven years. During his time
in prison his popularity grew. He organized political education classes
in jail and continued his fight against apartheid. After being released
from jail he became the first democratically elected president of South
Africa. He died in December of 2013.
Winner of the Noble Peace Prize in 1984 Bishop Desmond Tutu is a world
renowned religious leader who has fought diligently against apartheid,
xenophobic violence in South Africa and other violence against human
beings both black and white. He was born in South Africa in 1931 and has
been honored with many awards. He has also served many high post,
including General Secretary of the South African Council of Churches,
Dean of Saint Mary's Cathedral in Johannesburg, and Bishop of Lesotho.
Shaka was a famous African Zulu king and warrior. He was born in 1786
and was the son of the Zulu chief Senzangakona. At the age of twenty six
his father died and left Shaka's brother as king. As a prime example of
his ruthlessness, sometime around 1820, he killed his brother and
became king. He would become famous for his brutality. Shaka was a
military genius training his warriors in special military tactics and in
the use of modern weapons. Under his rule the Zulu people became a
powerful nation numbering over one million. His troops were feared by
enemies and his motto was "Death or victory".
Cetewayo ruled over the Zulu kingdom from 1872 to 1879 and was the king
during the Anglo-Zulu War. In 1879 his army defeated the British at the
battle of Isandlhwana in Zululand South Africa. This was the worst
defeat the British would ever experience against an African enemy.
However the British eventually regrouped and Cetewayo was captured and
imprisoned. Three years later Queen Victoria granted him a pardon and he
returned to his home land. In 1884 he died from what was believed to be
a heart attack but may have been a poisoning.
Kofi Annan was the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations,
serving from 1997 to 2007. In 2001 he won the Nobel Peace Prize. He was
born in Kumasi, Ghana on April 8th, 1938. He influenced world politics
in a positive manner and worked diligently at resolving conflicts
between nations in a peaceful manner.
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