Johannesburg • When Nelson Mandela’s great-granddaughter was killed in a June 2010 car crash, her tragic death cast a shadow over the start of the FIFA World Cup, and kept the former president and Nobel Prize winner away from the opening events.
13-year-old Zenani Mandela’s grandmother Zindzi — Nelson Mandela’s daughter — is fronting a new United Nations campaign to highlight the problems of road safety.
“We lose 1,000 children a day in road deaths, and the highest killer of children above the age of 10, worldwide, is road accidents,” said Zindzi.
“What the campaign’s all about to say these are deaths that are preventable” she says, adding that road deaths in developing countries, and Africa in particular, should be afforded a greater priority by regional governments.
The U.N. campaign — with Zindzi Mandela’s advocacy — urges education for road users and pedestrians alike. Zindzi also calls for investment to improve roads, pavements, signs and lighting across Africa where urban growth and road use has outstripped many nations’ abilities to build appropriate infrastructure.