Nelson Mandela left an estate worth R46m (£2.5m) from which he made cash bequests to his family totaling the equivalent of £1.1 million, the executors of his will have revealed.None of the three surviving children of South Africa’s first black president received any money in his will, and neither did his two eldest grand-daughters, because each of the five had been made gifts worth £165,000 in the years before Mandela’s death in December.However, in an apparent snub Mandela left nothing to his second wife Winnie, to whom he was married for nearly 40 years before they divorced in 1996.His oldest grandson Mandla, a traditional chief in his rural Eastern Cape birthplace who has had several public disputes with the rest of the family, will now also receive £165,000 but it will be controlled by a family trust rather than given to him direct.
His other grandchildren received varying amounts of money, some of which he said should be disbursed by older members of the family or put into trust, suggesting he wanted to ensure it was wisely spent.His widow Graca Machel will keep the four houses they owned jointly in her home country of Mozambique, along with the couple’s cars, artwork that decorated their homes and any jewellery he gave her.
Mandela also left £165,000 to each of her own two children with her first husband, former Mozambique president Samora Machel, and made gifts of £5,500 to his former schools and universities and rewarded those who had worked for him since his release from prison with £2,000 each - including his cook, his driver and his personal assistants.The will was formally revealed to his family shortly before it was made public in Johannesburg on Monday.
George Bizos, a close personal friend of Mandela and one of his executors, said the former president had never accumulated much personal wealth because self-enrichment did not interest him.
“When people asked him how they could please him, he would say to them: ’Build a school or, if you have the money, a school and a clinic,’” he said.“I don’t know that he every accepted money for his own benefit and that actually makes him quite different to what normally happens in South Africa or elsewhere.”The African National Congress, the political party to which Mandela devoted his life, will receive an unspecified amount of interest from one of his family funds, to promote its policies and particularly “reconciliation among the people of South Africa”.
Mandela’s houses in Cape Town, Johannesburg, Qunu, in the Eastern Cape and Mthatha, the nearby town, were bequeathed to his family trust but he stipulated that those relatives for whom he had not already provided homes should be allowed to continue living there.Both his homes in Houghton, Johannesburg, where he spent his final days, and in Qunu, where he was buried last month, should “serve as a place of gathering of the Mandela family in order to maintain its unity long after my death”, his will said.Dikgang Mosekene, South Africa’s deputy chief justice and one of Mandela’s three lawyers, said that although the reading had been “emotionally-charged” there had been no challenges to it thus far.
But two daughters, Makaziwe and Zenani, who began took legal action last year against those including Mr Bizos who controlled Mandela’s assets, had indicated that they might do so again if the will did not go their way.The will does not include the potentially larger sums that sit within family trusts set up by Madela before he died, and their eventual disbursement could prove “a massive, treacherous area”, according to a source close to the process.“It could still end up in court,” he said. “The trusts could be dissolved and the funds in them would go to the family members.”Makaziwe Mandela, Mr Mandela’s eldest daughter, refused to comment on the will. “People should leave me alone,” she said.
Ndileka Mandela, Mr Mandela’s eldest granddaughter who received her inheritance before he died and nothing more in the will, insisted she was not disappointed. “The only reaction you can have is to accept the contents of the will - it is what it is,” she said. “Everybody should work for their own wealth. Anything you get in a will is a bonus.”The three trusts, which contain money made from the commercialisation of his powerful brand including sales of items bearing his handprints and signature, are controlled by a combination of Mandela’s children, his lawyers and his closest friends.Mr Bizos, who had previously been the target of legal action by Mandela’s daughters, said yesterday he hoped that all such actions were now over. “Those who claim they follow in his footsteps should really try and do it,